SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — An arrest has been made in connection to the vandalism of the Junipero Serra statue in Sacramento’s Capitol Park, CBS13 confirmed.
Cesar Aguirre was taken into custody on Tuesday night. He is accused of knocking down the statue of the Spanish missionary back in July during a protest focusing on the rights and historical struggle of indigenous people.
The 18th century Roman Catholic priest founded nine of California’s 21 Spanish missions and forced Native Americans to stay at those missions after they were converted or face brutal punishment. Serra died in 1784.
Serra statues were also pulled down in Los Angeles and San Francisco back in June.
In July, Bishop Jaime Soto, of the Sacramento Catholic Diocese, issued a statement after the vandalism reading in part, “All monuments are imperfect as are our efforts to live up to America’s founding ideals. The primary task is to build up our community, not tear it down.”