Man decapitates Jesus statue at downtown Charleston church

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- A Columbia man on Sunday beat the head off a statue of Jesus sitting outside a King Street church.

According to police, 38-year-old Charles Jeffrey Short was arrested near Sacred Heart Catholic Church. He was carrying a sledgehammer in a backpack at the time of his arrest.

While police were looking for a suspect, they saw Short and asked him where he was coming from; he pointed to the church, according to the report.

The report states officers asked him about the vandalism and Short said he had hit the statue several times.

"I think I used a sledge hammer to strike that statue about six or seven times, because the first or second commandment states to not make an image of a male or female to be on display to the public," he reportedly told officers.

He was arrested and charged with malicious injury to real property. Short is being held at the Charleston County Detention Center on a $2,130 bond.

Short has a court hearing on Tuesday.