Man arrested after Jesus statue burns outside Florida home

Image copyright MediaWest A man has been arrested after setting fire to a statue of Jesus outside his home, neighbours have said. Phillip Thompson, who lives in the gated community of Lakes of Lake…

Man arrested after Jesus statue burns outside Florida home

Image copyright MediaWest

A man has been arrested after setting fire to a statue of Jesus outside his home, neighbours have said.

Phillip Thompson, who lives in the gated community of Lakes of Lake Nona in Florida, told the officers who arrested him that he had started the fire “in order to prepare for war”, court documents showed.

Video footage showed flames shooting from the 30-foot (9-m) statue as it burned outside his home.

He was later charged with setting fire to an unoccupied structure.

Image copyright Richard Meza

Photo caption Jesus statue burns in Florida

Mr Thompson, who neighbours said became obsessed with religion, was taken to a nearby hospital to be evaluated. His condition is unknown.

Since the arrest, more than $24,000 (around £18,000) has been raised for Mr Thompson on a crowdfunding site.

An architect has volunteered to design a new installation in the neighbourhood.

“We’re trying to stand up to the intolerant,” homeowner Patricia DiSanto said.

Image copyright Richard Meza

Image copyright Richard Meza

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

Image copyright MediaWest

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