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PD: Man breaks 100-year-old statue in theft at St. Mary's Basilica

Posted: 12:00 PM, Dec 21, 2017
Updated: 2017-12-21 19:00:02Z

A man is accused of stealing a 100-year-old statue and damaging it in Phoenix.

Phoenix police report that on December 17, Ruben Pena, age 45, walked into St. Mary's Basilica Church near 7th and Van Buren streets and took a statue off the wall. 

Church workers say the figure is 100-years-old and worth about $15,000. Pena dropped the statue and still attempted to leave the church with the broken pieces. 

As he was detained by church workers and held for police, he allegedly made threats to "bomb the church because of their blasphemy." Police say he made similar threats against the church two weeks before this incident. 

Pena says he's been prescribed medication for mental illness but refuses to take it because it was "prescribed by 'the man,'" and makes him lethargic. 

He's been charged with aggravated criminal damage