Police: Woman Arrested for Vandalizing St. Patrick’s Cathedral on New Year’s Day

St. Patrick's Cathedral
Getty Images/robertcicchetti

A woman was taken into custody this week for allegedly spraypainting graffiti on St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City on New Year’s Day.

According to authorities, “Chriselle Vega, 20, was arrested Tuesday night for marring the facade of the landmark church with the letters ‘ACAB’ — which stands for ‘All Cops Are Bastards,’ only hours into the new year,” the New York Post reported.

Investigators reviewed video reportedly showing Vega wearing a pink cape as she sprayed the letters on the cathedral. Police sources said she also confronted officers at the scene, who at the time were unaware of her alleged actions, the article continued.

“Police recognized her during a protest at Washington Square Park around 10:50 p.m. Tuesday, according to the sources. Vega, of the Bronx, admitted to the act, the sources said. She was charged with making graffiti,” the report said.

Around 150 protesters blocked traffic Friday outside the historic cathedral in Manhattan and officers responded to the scene on 51st Street and Fifth Avenue at about 1:30 a.m., according to Breitbart News.

Freelance reporter Oliya Scootercaster shared video footage of the group as they surrounded a New York Police Department (NYPD) vehicle:

She also tweeted a clip of a person working to remove the spraypainted lettering from the cathedral’s wall:

Law enforcement sources told the Post, “The protesters, affiliated with Black Lives Matter Brooklyn and Justice for George, started marching at the Stonewall Inn and had stopped at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.”

Cardinal Timothy Dolan recently denounced the defacement after staying silent about others over the summer, according to the Catholic News Agency.

He wrote:

You may recall that a similar outrage occurred last summer amid the sad violence afflicting American cities. At that time, I let it go, figuring I needn’t stoke the embers of anger that were burning throughout our country. Not this time. As a woman from The Bronx e-mailed me to say: “Cardinal Dolan, it’s time we learn from our Jewish and Islamic neighbors. A synagogue or mosque is defaced, and they are quick to condemn it. The governor and the mayor would join in. They’re right.”

“So is she. This attack on Saint Patrick’s was ugly and unlawful,” he concluded.


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