The Methodists Did It?

Two Birmingham-Southern College students have been arrested in connection with last month’s church fires. This disturbs me greatly, as Birmingham-Southern is the alma mater of my stepdaughter and many of my dearest friends (and it’s affiliated with the United Methodist Church, in case you were wondering about the post title). What were these idiots thinking? If they are indeed guilty, I hope they get significant prison time, but I’d also like to see them sent out on work release to help rebuild the buildings, and the faith communities, that they tried to destroy.

The Feds are still looking for a third suspect. They plan to hold a news conference at 2:00 pm CST today.

UPDATE: The third suspect has been arrested.

Benjamin Nathan Moseley and Russell Lee Debusk Jr., both 19-year-old students at Birmingham-Southern College, appeared in federal court and were ordered held on church arson charges pending a hearing Friday. Matthew Lee Cloyd, 20-year-old junior at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, was also arrested….

…Moseley confessed to the arsons after his arrest, investigators said in court papers.

The papers said Moseley told agents that he, Cloyd and Debusk went to Bibb County in Cloyd’s sport utility vehicle on Feb. 2 and set fire to five churches. A witness quoted Cloyd as saying Moseley did it “as a joke and it got out of hand.”

Moseley also told agents the four fires in west Alabama were set “as a diversion to throw investigators off,” an attempt that “obviously did not work,” the court papers said.

A joke that got out of hand? Sorry, guys, but setting fire to five churches is not funny, and torching four more in an attempt to cover your tracks pretty much puts the nail in the coffin to the “harmless prank” defense.

Here’s a link to the criminal complaint.

15 Responses to “The Methodists Did It?”

  1. Yep, I was wrong about the alleged suspects (age, motivations). Can’t wait to see what comes out of this.

    Is it all part of Roy Moore’s War on Christianity? This would be a civil war, though…? Wait, maybe Roy’s followers like that Civil War resonance…!

  2. On its face, it certainly looks to undermine Chris Matthews’ theory that radical leftists were behind it. Ahem.

  3. Oh no! that’s right! Chris Matthews was (allegedly) wrong too!

    Well, I’ve admitted my error. Chris?

  4. Whitters says:

    Eek! That’s my beloved alma mater. Hopefully this won’t reflect badly on the college itself, but rather on the individuals who chose to commit these crimes.

  5. Kathy says:

    Whitters, unless this turns out to be some kind of fraternity “prank”, I don’t think the school’s reputation will suffer. I hope not, anyway. We still have two to send to college, and I’d love for them to go there.

  6. Kathy says:

    Oh, and Jeff? I hope you aren’t holding your breath.

  7. anna says:

    OMG! Are you kidding? I better turn on the damn television. Does it say how they found out who it was? Unbelievable.

  8. Songbird says:

    This is sad. Not that it wasn’t already sad.

  9. Reminds me of the saying:

    “It’s all fun and games until someone get’s hurt…”


  10. patrick says:

    re: Methodits vs. Baptists:

    Spring softball season is just around the corner, y’know…..

    And everyone knows that the Baptists are a damn juggernaut on the fat-ball diamond….

    I’m just saying….

  11. Idina says:

    Are these guys part of the red-neck jihadists, rich white kids with more time and money then they know what to do with.

  12. Kathy says:

    Idina, I’m sure we’ll find out more about them in the future, but that’s what it looks like right now.

  13. Don says:

    Dang, how times have changed for the worse! When I was in TPI everyone thought we were horribly corrupt when we had “Panty Raids” at the girls’ dorm.

    You may be interested in reading what Poser says on his blog @, He says he actually went to high school with one of these creeps.

  14. Kathy says:

    Don, I had been wondering if the charges would ultimately be federal or state. Since the arsons don’t appear to fall under the federal hate crime statute, it seems to this non-lawyer that the state should try them.

    Ooh, panty raids! I haven’t heard that term for a while. I never even went toilet paper rolling — what a boring goody two shoes I was.

  15. Bill says:

    You may have been a goody two shoes then, but you’re a hell raiser now…..

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