Police in Virginia have reportedly launched an arson investigation after a church was targeted with fire and graffiti in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
The St. John Neumann Catholic Community Church in Reston – outside of Washington D.C. – had profane messages and pictures of female genitalia spray-painted on its exterior over the weekend, according to Fox5 DC.
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue also responded to a call around 6:45 a.m. Sunday regarding smoldering mulch on the property, the station added.
"I just stopped by to say a prayer for my father who just passed away this week and so this is upsetting to see this at my church," one member of the parish told Fox5 DC. "I don’t mind people expressing themselves, but I don’t think that they should do it in a way that is vandalism."
Two of the messages read "This won’t stop" and "Separation of Church + State."
Police in Fairfax County are reportedly now reviewing surveillance footage in the search for those responsible.
The incident is being investigated as arson because an accelerant was used to start the fire, Fox5 DC reports.
It was not immediately clear why the church was targeted.
On its website, the St. John Neumann Catholic Community Church has posted a link to a message from Bishop Michael Burbidge of the Catholic Diocese of Arlington saying "we thank God for this welcome decision" of the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade.