BOCA RATON, FLA. (WSVN) - A pentagram sculpture, which represents LeVeyan Satanism, was ripped from the ground after being placed on display in Boca Raton.
The 20-foot, 300-pound display was knocked over and damaged, Tuesday morning, just before 2 a.m., at the Boca Raton Sanborn Square. Tire tracks were also seen on the grass next to the display.
The Satanic display had been vandalized before. Investigators said it was spray painted on Dec. 6.
The Satanic display has caused controversy ever since it joined the Christmas display in Boca Raton’s Sanborn Square, with some community members and religious saying it disrespects their religion.
Last week, a group of pastors gathered at the park to discuss, in their opinions, the pentagram’s offensive nature, as it has been displayed next to a Nativity scene at the park. They peacefully marched and demonstrated against what they said “is a sign of evil.”
“There’s a lot of issues here,” said Joseph Kabbas, who said he stands with that group. He does not condone the damage but did not like seeing the display here.
“This is an issue to be inflammatory,” explained Kabbas. “If he would have put this up in February or March, he wouldn’t have gotten the same reaction from everybody.”
Kabbas was talking about Preston Smith, the Boca Raton High language arts teacher who obtained the permits for the display and worked with the Freedom From Religion foundation to put it up.
“We’re ready to make this an annual tradition,” said Smith via phone, just days before it was ripped from the ground.
Yet, some people who don’t agree with Smith’s actions still said they respect his rights.
“I, as a marine, fought and will protect people’s right to their freedom of religion and freedom of speech, so it didn’t really irk me,” said resident Tom Beal. “It just added curiosity, like, ‘Wow, that’s interesting.'”
The City of Boca Raton has said the display is legal, and there were no plans to have it removed.
Police continue to search for the person responsible for the damage.
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