CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. — A man is now facing federal hate crime and arson charges for a fire that destroyed the Church of the Latter-day Saints in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.
The U.S. Department of Justice on Thursday announced the charges against 46-year-old Christopher Scott Pritchard, of Cape Girardeau. Pritchard also faces state charges of property damage motivated by discrimination, arson, burglary and stealing. His state trial is scheduled for October.
The fire broke out in April 2021 and quickly engulfed the church. No one was inside and no one was injured, but the building was destroyed. A phone message left Friday with Pritchard’s lawyer was not immediately returned.