Glendale’s St. Mary’s Church Vandalized

Sculpture made of special Armenian stone

BY VERONICA ROCHA
From the Glendale News Press

SOUTH GLENDALE — According to police, the 23-year-old Glendale man who allegedly used a sledgehammer to smash a sacred monument outside St. Mary’s Armenian Apostolic Church could face felony vandalism charges.

Victor Petrescu was arrested about 10 a.m. Tuesday after he was seen using a sledgehammer to break off pieces from the church’s monument on the 500 block of South Central Avenue, causing roughly $80,000 in damage, Glendale Police Sgt. Tom Lorenz said.

Petrescu told police he was Jewish, and that “it said in the Bible he must destroy sacred pillars,” Lorenz said.

The act was not a hate crime because Lorenz said detectives have questioned Petrescu’s mental stability.

On Wednesday, Petrescu allegedly changed his initial story, telling police that he was Christian, according to Lorenz.

Church staff and congregants saw Petrescu and tried to stop him, but he did not answer as he raised the sledgehammer and hit the monument, stated Rev. Ardak Demirjian.

When they called out to him, Petrescu reportedly turned and showed them his sledgehammer, so they backed away, Demirjian added.

According to Demirjian, the monument was donated to the church more than 10 years ago and commemorates the day Armenians adopted Christianity, 1,700 years ago.

“Church officials are still trying to determine how they will repair the monument since it is made of a single piece of stone with intricate carvings,” said Demirjian.

“Any form of vandalism brings sadness to all people, nations and religions,” he said. “If he is not normal, we pray for him.”

Petrescu listed the Bible and “Jerusalem in Prophecy” as his books of interest on his MySpace page.

Detectives are scheduled to present evidence of the vandalism today to prosecutors, who will decide whether or not to file charges.

“It would be very nice to get this guy off the streets and put him away,” Lorenz said.

If charged, Petrescu will be arraigned by Friday.

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29 Comments

  1. Satenik said:

    This guy seems to be quite a shifty character. Obviously he is “clever” enough to change his story from one day to the next. If he is after destroying sacred pillars why didn’t he go on destroying the Jewish sacred pillars. It seems that the Armenian monuments and khachkars in particular have become a soft target for these so called deranged lunatics. There was a similar incident in St. Edjmeyatsin last year, apparently by a foreign lunatic. I smell Turkey’s dirty hands in this incident. Armenians everywhere should give extra protection to their churches and monumemts. Last year the Aemenian khatchkar in Wales was completely damaged by the Turks. These are precious monuments and some of them are ireplacable. More vigilance is required. We must learn a little from Jews in this respect, you must see how they protect their synagogue both ouside and in.

  2. Robert said:

    Satenik,

    So, everything that occurrs to any Armenian eddifice is the work of the dirty hands of the evil Turk! How dare you make such a racist claim!! I lost many family members due to your forefather’s atrocities! Man, the world looks forward to the day when you “people” evolve to point of being bipedal and climbing down from those trees! You are nothing more than an unwiped anus!!! But then again, what more can anyone expect from a dashnak Armenian!!!!!

    • john said:

      David Lloyd George former British Prime Minister said in 1914, when his country was fighting the Ottoman Empire in World War I that:
      “The Turks are a human cancer, a creeping agony in the flesh of the lands which they misgovern, rotting every fibre of life … I am glad that the Turk is to be called to a final account for his long record of infamy against humanity.”

      The New York Tribune told its readers in the year 1919: “the Turks have always been a parasite and a stench in the nostrils of civilization”

    • john said:

      Voltaire characterised the Turks as:
      “tyrants of the women and enemies of arts”
      “to chase away from Europe these barbaric usurpers”

    • john said:

      William Ewart Gladstone, a 19th century British Prime Minister was quoted in the same book as saying:
      Let me endeavor, very briefly to sketch, in the rudest outline what the Turkish race was and what it is. It is not a question of Mohammedanism sim­ply, but of Mohammedanism compounded with the peculiar character of a race. They are not the mild Mohammedans of India, nor the chivalrous Saladins of Syria, nor the cultured Moors of Spain. They were, upon the whole, from the black day when they first entered Europe, the one great anti-human specimen of humanity. Wherever they went a broad line of blood marked the track behind them, and, as far as their dominion reached, civilization disap­peared from view. They represented everywhere government by force as opposed to government by law.—Yet a government by force can not be main­tained without the aid of an intellectual element.— Hence there grew up, what has been rare in the his­tory of the world, a kind of tolerance in the midst of cruelty, tyranny and rapine. Much of Christian life was contemptuously left alone and a race of Greeks was attracted to Constantinople which has all along made up, in some degree, the deficiencies of Turkish Islam in the element of mind!

    • Ararat said:

      Robert,

      It seems like you are here fishing for every opportunity to inject your racist Turkish venom into our conversations. Satenik has every right to freely express her thoughts and be suspicious of you Turks. After all, who murdered 1.5 million innocent Armenian women and children less than a hundred years ago to hold onto their homeland? Your forefathers. Who desecrated one of the oldest Armenian cemeteries in Julfa, Nakhichevan a few year back? Your criminal racist Azeri Turkish “step” brothers. Who attacked and vandalized several Armenian Genocide Monuments throughout Europe? Your hate-filled, brainwashed barbaric countrymen. Who murdered the peaceful Armenian journalist Hrant Dink in Istanbul a few years back and got hero’s welcome at the police station? Your ill-informed, brainwashed, racist countryman with protection from the MIT, Turkish Secret Service, police and the gendarmerie.

      The world has ceased and given up looking forward to the day you Turkish scums stop acting like four-legged donkeys and join the civilized world. You are the filthy Turk with un-wiped anus trying to stink up this place. Go wash your mouth and learn how to talk otherwise I will stick the Dashnak flag up your rear end.

  3. Satenik said:

    What if this lunatic had decided to kill those in the church because some crazy voices told him to do it? Armenians take heed and protect your churches and monuments. Deranged or paid agents should not have such an easy access to enter our sacred places. Suspects should be subject to searches and strict checks. Prevention better than cure. Hopefully some hard lessons have been learnt from this unpleasant incident.

  4. Barkev Asadourian said:

    Behand him we do believe there are dirty hands by turkish gangester supported
    by turk officials,as anouced by them that to be taken actions against Diapora Armenians
    whome they enlarging activitis to progress Armenian Genocide Recognaziations.

  5. ashot yerkat said:

    Let the courts do their work, and send this fellow to jail where prison justice will be meted out to him in no time. Petrescu sounds like a Moslem name from one of the former Yugoslavian provinces. If this fellow indeed is a Moslem, then he has done great disservice to his own religion. Also, to Veronica Rocha, the reporter; in common respect kindly refer to the clergyman as “Rev. Demirjian” or “Der Ardak” throughout, not by his last name only; he is not your playmate, he is a priest.

  6. andrew g. said:

    he was my good friend in highschool, he was a real popular guy too… he just went downhill after several events and now he has completely lost it

  7. harut said:

    I think the city should provide 24/7 security guards on the church and check these guys back ground and see exactly where he comes from and who did he talked to in the last 2 years including his emails my space bullshit and phone calls.

  8. Noting Radd said:

    So onlookers just stood there watching while this idiot
    Destroyed our church monument? Dook hyer dartserek mookik poxaren vor mart linek. Sran bidi kaxeyik ztaritz vor bolor imanayeen mer xacharnern pashtpanvatz es.

    • Har said:

      i don’t think going after a maniac wielding a sledgehammer is such a good idea. At least no one was hurt. From how much this church charges for weddings and other occasions, i think it will be fine. Not to mention, they are tax exempt.

  9. alexciffer said:

    as know he is mentaly sick and is under psihyatric surveliance ;be sure it is not a rasial act or hate,he is really sick and needs treatment

  10. Ararat said:

    Robert,

    It seems like you are here fishing for every opportunity to inject your racist Turkish venom into our conversations. Satenik has every right to freely express her thoughts and be suspicious of you Turks. After all, who murdered 1.5 million innocent Armenian women and children less than a hundred years ago to hold onto their homeland? Your forefathers. Who desecrated one of the oldest Armenian cemeteries in Julfa, Nakhichevan a few year back? Your criminal racist Azeri Turkish “step” brothers. Who attacked and vandalized several Armenian Genocide Monuments throughout Europe? Your hate-filled, brainwashed barbaric countrymen. Who murdered the peaceful Armenian journalist Hrant Dink in Istanbul a few years back and got hero’s welcome at the police station? Your ill-informed, brainwashed, racist countryman with protection from the MIT, Turkish Secret Service, police and the gendarmerie.

    The world has ceased and given up looking forward to the day you Turkish scums stop acting like four-legged donkeys and join the civilized world. You are the filthy Turk with un-wiped anus trying to stink up this place. Go wash your mouth and learn how to talk otherwise I will stick the Dashnak flag up your rear end.

  11. Henry said:

    The saddest part is that this Sunday, August 15, is the name day of the church. The Prelate Archbishop is going to celebrate the Divine Liturgy and conduct the blessing of the grapes. It is soo ugly that we, the Glendale people (as a whole – not just Armenians) have to welcome His Grace in this manner. To top it off, His Holiness Karekin Catholicos is visiting the city in a few weeks. It is truly disappointing. May God help him.

    • Satenik said:

      Thank you Ararat. It’s the criminal subconscience of the Turk that brings them here over and over again. I’m for one comforted by the fact that Turks are cursed because what they did particularly to Armenians was a vile act against God Himself and as such they are all destined to Hell where they will rot with their master satan for ever and ever and ever but while on earth, we have work to do and we’ll see these virus Turks hopefully pushed to the outer parts of Mongolia!

  12. Random Armenian said:

    Before everyone starts accusing this person or that government, let more facts come through. Even after all we’ve been through a little prudence is always a good idea before throwing out accusations.

    Petrescu sounds Romanian.

    • Arn.Sweden. said:

      AGREE FULLY !!!.

      AFTER ALL – ALL ACTIONS IN THE WORLD ARE GODS WILL IN TWO WAYS –

      THE FIRST IS THE DIRECT WILL OF GOD,
      HIS COMAND,

      THE OTHER IS,
      ALL ACTIONS GOD ALLOWES.

      SO WHY DID GOD ALLOWE THIS ACTION OR WAS IT HIS DIREKT WILL ???.

      DIREKT WILL I THINK NOT BECAUSE GOD IS NOT A LAWBREAKER.

      SO WHY DID HE ALLOWE THIS ACT ???.

      COULD IT BE THE NAME – SANKT MARY – POINTING TO THE ROMAN SO CALLED CHATOLIC CHURCH – RECORDED IN THE REVELATION OF JOHN AS – THE GREAT HARLOT – DRUNKEN WITH THE BLOOD OF JESUS TRUE WITNESSES ???.

      HMMM – ???.

      Arn.Sweden.

  13. Satenik said:

    Funny how a Turk called “Robert”(ha ha) calls an Armenian a racist! A Turk, believing that Armenians have not evolved another big HA Ha Ha , perhaps this so called Robert, should read what the great man Charles Darwin had to say about the evolvement of Turks…..I know under the article 301 it’s forbidden for the Turks to find out about what goes on in the world. Robert or chengizoghloo, should make comments on Turkish porn sites instead of infesting Asbarez with his vile comments!!!! Next thing thisidiot will say that Hrant Dink was not murdered by a Turk and that the Turkish government was not involved in it ! Go away Turk and I’m using a very mild way of saying it because I don’t want to infest Asbarez like you do. You Turk!!! Read about what Lloyd George had to say about you cancerous lot and shut up!!!!!

  14. Hye said:

    I don’t think this guy has psychiatric problems although it would help him in his case to claim as such. He’s probably one of those racist ultra orthodox Jews, like in Jerusalem, who spit on and taunt Armenian priests. This act of vandalism IS a hate crime. Too bad this case isn’t being shown in the mainstream media (wonder why). But people shouldn’t stress out too much for revenge, he already has a one way destination.

  15. Rita said:

    why are these comments talking about turks>? the article said the man was a jew.

  16. victor dorin petrescu said:

    look relax read Det. 7 the fifth book of Moses didnt break Moses Law I was following his Law..now how can you argue or slander me? did I have a chance too type or speak? what if i was being oppressed? still No Pity for you not me that is….how can I be deranged look who’s my new Judge all you people!? Lets call Ozzy Osbourne and ask him his wife Sharon is Jewish? Because I sure am a Jew help me out Jewish people! asap

  17. moonman44 said:

    Look why is eveyone judging this person maybe he was following his beliefs according to Jewish law.

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