By now you may have heard of the Texas student who authorities said confessed to writing “I set a synagogue on fire” in a journal discovered in his dormitory.
But authorities in Houston say he has now admitted to writing things, including the words “I set a synagogue on fire”, in the journal he had locked up and that was found more than a week ago in his dorm room.
Police said that when they searched Matthew Cline’s room they found items that led them to believe he was going to do something. A bit later, they found the journal that contained the infamous message.
Officers also found a copy of the book, In the Footsteps of St Augustine, which includes the book’s moral message and is popular among college students.
His comments about being part of the Calvary – a book reference – were found on a calendar, a YouTube video found that appeared to be on fire, and students said they were sure he had been smoking pot.
“More than a week after it was found in his room, Cline walked into a police station admitting to police to writing the words ‘I set a synagogue on fire’ in the journal,” according to a statement from the Houston police department.
Officials said that Cline was released from jail on Wednesday to be monitored by a probation officer.
The graffiti at the scene of the fire and the book and calendar were written on the bathroom wall of the Northside Heights Temple, which was built by and was originally used by members of the Third Ward Benevolent Society, a chapter of the church of Christ.
It was originally built in the late 1880s, during the Reconstruction era, and served as a charitable organization, providing services to needy and sick members of the Third Ward, a neighborhood located between downtown Houston and the Upper West Side of Houston.
In 2007, the Third Ward Community Youth Bureau decided to renovate the building and convert it into a United States Holocaust Memorial Museum café, which would also provide other educational programs and resource rooms for local schools and libraries.
I believe the Holocaust Museum should have the proper protection A student at the Northside Heights Temple of the Third Ward?
The memorial museum is described as a nonprofit organization that offers free or low-cost education and recreation programs in areas of the US where genocide and racist crimes are ongoing, often featuring educational activities that explore the Holocaust and Jewish heritage.
The organization chose the temple to host the café because of its ties to the history of the third ward, as one of the communities hardest hit by the devastating Hurricane Katrina of 2005, when 1,117 people died. The Northside Heights Temple is near the historically black neighbourhoods of Clear Lake, Shady Oaks and the lower Ninth Ward, all of which were subjected to Katrina’s wrath.
You can read the archive of the front pages of the Houston Chronicle here.