US & World

Church member accused of torching African-American church, spray-painting 'Vote Trump'

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Mississippi authorities have arrested a man in the burning of an African-American church that was also spray-painted with the words, "Vote Trump."
 
Mississippi Department of Public Safety spokesman Warren Strain says Andrew McClinton of Leland, Mississippi, who is African-American, is charged with "First Degree Arson of a Place of Worship."
 
McClinton was arrested Wednesday. Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Greenville, Mississippi, was burned and vandalized November 1st, a week before the presidential election.

Bishop Clarence Green of Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church tells The Associated Press McClinton is a member of the church.  It was not immediately clear whether McClinton is represented by an attorney.

Mississippi Department of Corrections records show McClinton served eight years in prison after being convicted of armed robbery in 2004 in Lee County, Mississippi. He was released in January 2012. His time served included days he was jailed before trial.
   
Greenville is a Mississippi River port city of about 32,100 people, and about 78 percent of its residents are African-American.
 
After the fire, Hopewell congregants began worshipping in a chapel at predominantly white First Baptist Church of Greenville.


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