Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Pastor discovers bullet holes in facade of Gus Young Avenue church

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BATON ROUGE — Police are trying to figure out who fired shots at a Baptist church along Gus Young Avenue.

The pastor of St. Michael Baptist Church, Melissa Dunn, found eight bullet holes in the side of the building after services on Sunday, but no one is entirely sure when the shots were fired.

"This is holy ground. Holy ground," Dunn said in an interview Tuesday. "I don't know why people feel the need to do things to make other people unhappy. This church wasn't bothering nobody. Nobody."

Six years ago, the congregation was without its usual home for nine months after a car tore through the side of the building. The car had been reported stolen and the driver was fleeing police when the crash occurred.

This time around, a parishioner discovered the first bullet hole.

"We were getting ready to walk out of the church and one of young men said look, and I said what? He said look and pointed," Dunn said. With at least eight shots fired, Dunn fears the building was targeted.

"To whoever did this, I just want to say I'm not mad at you. I'm not upset with you. I just want to give you some advice to be more careful of your targets," Dunn said. "Finding who did it is like a needle in a haystack. But, with God, someone is walking around with a hat on their head that says 'I'm a target for God,' for what I did."

No one was injured; the church was apparently empty when the shooting occurred.

Dunn said BRPD is meeting with the church's deacons Wednesday to discuss the status of the investigation.

Dunn said she plans to have the church congregation pray for the community on Sunday during service in light of the incident.


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