Police: elderly woman assaulted by man who broke into LDS Church in Centerville

CENTERVILLE, Utah – An elderly woman sustained minor injuries after a man allegedly broke into an LDS Church and assaulted her Saturday night.

The Centerville Police Department said the incident happened between 9 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. at the LDS Church on 270 North 300 East.

A 71-year-old woman was practicing the organ for a church performance the next day when she was attacked.

“She was in the building alone,” said Lt. Zan Robison. “The building was locked, this church house was locked.”

Police said she reported hearing a loud pounding on the door of the Church on the northwest side that lasted for several minutes.

Unable to get inside, police said that person threw a rock through the back window, breaking in.

“Approximately thirty minutes later she described playing the organ and having somebody come up behind her, and start to attack her,” said Robison.

That’s when Robison said she blacked out for a moment.

“She sustained some injuries to her neck from being choked from behind when she was originally attacked by this individual,” said Robison. “Obviously, it was a pretty frightening experience.”

Not able to clearly describe her attacker, police said they do have a few leads.

“A person of an average build, wearing a grey hoodie sweatshirt and that was gathered by the victim as the suspect was leaving the church,” said Robison.

Though the woman is expected to make a full recovery, neighbors in the area said she was struggling and just wants to put the attack behind her.

With few leads, Robison said he still is trying to figure out the attacker’s motive.

“it just boggles the mind,” said Robison.

Centerville police asked the public to contact them if anyone saw anything last night around the church, or have additional information.

This is a developing story that we will continue to update as soon as more information becomes available.