Bloody message at church is latest in communities where slain animals found

Published On: Jun 07 2013 07:55:46 AM HST
BATH, Ind. -

A bloody message scrawled on a church wall is the latest in a series of bizarre crimes to hit a rural community.

Police said someone broke into the Springdale Methodist Church in Bath, Ind., and wrote a derogatory message in blood on the church walls. 

“I wouldn’t even know who could do something like that, other than someone who’s psychotic,” said Jessica Brennen.

She lives close to the church but even closer to where another series of disturbing crimes already had the area on alert.

The latest discovery was of two ponies believed to be mutilated.  They were found this week in the field where they lived on a farm in Pierce Township, Ohio, just a few miles from the church. 

That farm is adjacent to another farm where four sheep were killed and two horses suffered deep cuts from what investigators believe was an attack with a hatchet. 

Carrie Wagers, who owns a farm in Reily, Ohio, is staying awake all night to guard her animals.

“No sleep, sitting downstairs listening, keeping the TV off, everything off so I can hear if anybody’s around.  It’s scary, it really is,” Wagers said Thursday.

Adding to concerns is a series of suspicious fires that began about the same time as the mutilations.  A house and at least two barns in the same area have been burned.

The sheriff’s departments in Butler County, Ohio, and Franklin County, Ind., are working together to solve the crimes, but they haven’t determined if some or all of them are related.  

Until a suspect is caught, residents like Carrie Wagers will be getting little sleep. 

“Who knows what they could do next; they could start hurting people,” Wagers said.


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