Wednesday, November 12, 2008                                                                                       View Comments

Man arrested for trying to steal communion wafers

JENSEN BEACH, FL -- Parishioners at St. Martin de Porres Catholic Church stopped a Connecticut man from leaving Saturday morning Mass after he “attempted to steal a handful of communion wafers from the priest,” according to an arrest report.

Martin County sheriff’s deputies found six to seven parishioners holding down John Samuel Ricci, 33, of Canton, Conn., when they arrived around 9:30 a.m. at the church, located on Northeast Savannah Boulevard.

Ricci had tried to leave the church after grabbing the communion wafers, but “the enraged and offended parishioners stood in his way,” the report said.

Ricci got angry, cursed at the parishioners and even pushed two of them to the ground, according to the report. One suffered minor injuries, while another was taken to the hospital complaining of chest pain.

Deputies arrested Ricci and charged him with two counts of simple battery, theft and disruption of a religious assembly.

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