Man Attacks Priest, Pours Wine on His Head and Sprays Compressed Air in His Mouth Inside Delaware Church Office, Police Say

The suspect allegedly struck the priest over the head with a bottle of wine and repeatedly punched and kicked him.

What to Know

  • A man is accused of attacking a priest at a church in Wilmington, Delaware.
  • The suspect allegedly punched and kicked the priest, poured wine on his head and sprayed compressed air in his mouth.
  • The suspect was taken into custody after church employees locked him outside the building, police said. The priest is in stable condition.

A man is accused of attacking a priest, pouring wine on his head and spraying a can of compressed air into his mouth.

Employees at Resurrection Parish in Wilmington, Delaware, told police they heard the suspect arguing with a pastor inside his office Monday. They then heard what sounded like a struggle.

When the employees entered the office they found the suspect, identified by New Castle County Police as 25-year-old Joshua August, repeatedly punching and kicking the pastor in the stomach and face while he was lying on the floor, police said.

The church employees tried to break up the fight but the suspect pushed them aside, went into another room and grabbed a bottle of wine, according to investigators. He then allegedly poured the wine over the pastor, struck him over the head with the bottle and then grabbed a can of compressed air and sprayed it into his mouth.

The employees told police they lured the suspect out of the church by telling him they would give him a ride and money. Once the August was outside, they locked the front door of the church. The suspect struck the door multiple times to get back in but couldn’t break through, police said. Officers then arrived at the scene.

The pastor was taken to Christiana Hospital for treatment. He is in stable condition. August and a parish staff member were also treated for minor injuries.

August was released from the hospital late Monday night and jailed on assault, resisting arrest and criminal mischief charges. He was held on $52,250 secured bail and it was unclear if he had an attorney who could comment on his behalf.

Parish offices at the church as well as daily masses are canceled until further notice.

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