LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Police said parishioners at a west Louisville church tackled an armed juvenile Sunday who tried to steal money during the service.
In a release, Louisville Metro Police said a juvenile walked in to the Portland Church of Christ on Portland Avenue around 11 a.m. Police said the suspect came in during the sermon, and after money was collected in the offering plate, he grabbed it off the altar and ran.
The suspect reportedly took out a pistol as he ran down the aisle and tried to fire it into the air. That's when LMPD says parishioners tackled the boy, who struggled and even bit several parishioners before being disarmed. Church members held him down until LMPD First Division officers arrived.
He was taken into custody, but his name was not released because he is a juvenile. LMPD did not release charges and said the investigation is ongoing.
The church's pastor did not want to give an on camera interview, but said the church members have prayed for the juvenile.
Metro Council President David James responded to the situation, saying, "I would say that I’m just kind of shocked that that would happen at a church. I really don’t have the real words to say how shocking that is."
Ben Johnson, assistant director of recreation for Metro Parks and Recreation helps oversee more than one dozen community centers throughout Louisville, including one in the Portland neighborhood that focuses on programming for kids.
"There is no kind of programming we cannot offer," said Johnson, talking about community partnerships.
Johnson said it's always difficult to hear of juveniles involved in crime.
"It does pull out your heart a little more when you think it's a minor, and you also think, like, where are we at in the world, regardless of your faith belief, where are we at?" he said.
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