Police search for church vandalism suspects


FRENCHTOWN, Mont. - A church was vandalized Saturday night in Frenchtown, so badly that officials didn't release the pictures. The sheriff's office explained that the images plastered on the church were very offensive and they didn't want them leaving the office.

Several neighbors and community members in Frenchtown Wednesday were unaware of the vandalism at the LDS church, but they all expressed how awful it was to hear about it.

One neighbor explained to NBC Montana that they don't see a lot of vandalism around that area, so it's disappointing.

Sunday morning, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Frenchtown arrived to church early to prepare for services. That's when they saw graffiti on the outside of the building and didn't want others to see it.

"We actually covered it up when we saw it, just with some plastic bags out there, just to minimize the questions and worries and everything else out there," explained Doug Lundell, the Frenchtown Ward Bishop.

In the three years that Lundell has been with the church, he hasn't ever experienced a vandalism crime. He explained that he's not too worried about the situation, but his No. 1 priority was to get the building cleaned off.

"For the most part, this is a special building to us, you know, we consider it a neat place to come and worship our Heavenly Father, so that being the case, we just want to keep it nice and clean all the time," said Lundell.

The church hired a company to sandblast off the spray paint, but there are still places where the damage is present.

"It's always frustrating to have someone show no respect to your building and have to clean it up," said Lundell.

So far, investigators have no leads in the case.

If you have any information about the suspects, please contact Five Valleys Crimestoppers at 406-721-4444.