Man Arrested With Gas Cans and Lighters at St. Patrick’s Cathedral Is a Philosophy Teacher


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Marc Lamparello’s story appeared off from the beginning.

It was almost eight p.m. on Wednesday when Mr. Lamparello, a 37-year-old graduate pupil and lecturer on philosophy, entered St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Midtown Manhattan toting two gasoline cans, lighter fluid and lighters, the police stated.

Hours earlier than, he had bought a $2,800, one-way airplane ticket to Rome, which was set to depart the following day.

Mr. Lamparello was about 20 toes into the church when ushers approached him and stated he couldn’t be contained in the constructing with the cans of gasoline, the police stated. He defined that he was attempting to take a shortcut via the enduring sanctuary to achieve his van, which he claimed had run out of fuel.

Mr. Lamparello’s gold minivan, although, turned out to not be out of gasoline, the police stated, and a stroll via St. Patrick’s was hardly a shortcut.

Denied entry, Mr. Lamparello left the sanctuary, sloshing gasoline on the ground as he went, the police stated. He was stopped exterior the church by law enforcement officials, who seen the dual fuel cans.

The incident got here simply earlier than Easter and two days after a devastating fireplace tore via the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris.

Mr. Lamparello, who has addresses in New Jersey and in Brooklyn, was taken into custody Wednesday night time and questioned by detectives, together with officers from the Police Department’s intelligence division and the Joint Terrorism Task Force. He was being held on costs of tried arson and reckless endangerment, senior police officers stated.

But on Thursday afternoon, he was transported from the Midtown North Precinct to Bellevue Hospital Center for a psychiatric analysis, the police stated, and it remained unclear when he would seem in courtroom.

It was the second church-related arrest this week for Mr. Lamparello. On Monday night time, he was arrested inside Newark’s Sacred Heart Cathedral after he refused to depart the sanctuary. He informed officers the church was a home of God and needs to be open at all hours earlier than throwing himself on the ground and vowing to remain.

“Said, ‘If you want me to leave, you’ll have to take me out in handcuffs,’” Armando B. Fontoura, the Essex County sheriff, stated. He described Mr. Lamparello as “very respectful,” if obstinate.

Mr. Lamparello was taken to a police station that night and charged with resisting arrest, defiant trespassing and interfering with the administration of regulation.

He was evaluated by emergency medical technicians, who discovered nothing incorrect with him, Sheriff Fontoura stated. His mom escorted him that night time from the precinct to his mother and father’ residence in Hasbrouck Heights, N.J., he stated.

It stays unclear what might have pushed Mr. Lamparello to go to St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Wednesday. Police officers wouldn’t say what, if any, motive he disclosed to officers.

“There doesn’t appear to be any connection to a terror group,” stated John Miller, the Police Department’s deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism.

Mr. Lamparello is a doctoral candidate in philosophy at the City University of New York. His mom informed the New Jersey authorities he had an house in New York City.

He was a 2004 graduate of Boston College and was listed as instructing programs at Brooklyn College this spring. The police stated Mr. Lamparello additionally taught at Seton Hall University in New Jersey.

He had written and printed a e book, “Reason and Counterpoint,” in 2016. His on-line biography on Amazon.com suggests an curiosity in questions of faith and larger powers; it stated he was engaged on a book-length venture that may wrestle with the existence of God.

At least one of many programs he has taught, Introduction to the Problems of Philosophy, touched on faith.

The course included “such topics as the nature and scope of knowledge, meaning and verification, the existence of God, determinism and free will, the mind-body problem, and the nature of moral judgments,” in line with an online course description for Brooklyn College.

Michael Gold contributed reporting. Susan C. Beachy contributed research.



Source link Nytimes.com

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