ONEONTA – Oneonta Police arrested a man after he allegedly spray-painted “demonic” symbols on a church and other Main Street businesses, according to Police Chief Doug Brenner.
Thomas R. Miller, 26, Oneonta, was arrested after a tip into graffiti that appeared on Main Street businesses and two churches between November 2019 and Feb. 22. “We were able to match the symbols with ones he posted on social media,” said Brenner.
Among the symbols was an upside down pentagram with the number 666, allegedly a “demonic” symbol, Brenner said, that was painted on the walkway to the Lord’s Table at St. James Church.
“It cost some of these places $1,400 to clean this up,” he said.
He was charged with eight counts of Making Graffiti, three counts of Criminal Mischief in the 4th degree, both class A misdemeanors, two counts of Criminal Mischief in the third degree, a class E felony and one count of Criminal Mischief in the third degree as a hate crime, a class D felony, for the church graffiti.
Miller was issued an appearance ticket to appear at the City of Oneonta Court at a later date.
“The perseverance of our dedicated officers sends a clear message that expressions of hate have no place in Oneonta and will not be tolerated,” said Mayor Gary Herzig. I thank Officer Amanda Catapano for her leadership in pursuing this arrest.”