Vandal sought for repeatedly breaking into Northwest Philadelphia church

church vandal
This surveillance image shows the suspect accused of vandalizing a Germantown Avenue church on multiple occasions.

Detectives are asking for the public’s help in identifying a man who has repeatedly broken into a historic Northwest Philadelphia church over the last month.

“He has found a way into the building for some reason, and it’s been about four or five times,” said Pastor Richard Kyerematen, of the Germantown Church of the Brethren, located on Germantown Avenue between Sharpnack and Montana streets. “He’s not taking anything or stealing anything.”

Instead, the suspect, described by investigators as a man believed to be in his early 20s, is damaging cameras and other equipment used for the church’s live broadcast, Kyerematen told Metro. He has also occasionally destroyed flower vases and other items on the pulpit, he said.

PPD released a video Tuesday that appears to show him violently throwing a television monitor. Police said he has vandalized the church at least three times in the last 30 days – most recently at around 11:30 p.m. on Monday, April 8.

During the last two incidents, Kyerematen said, the man has broken a side window to gain access to the building. He said he does not know why the suspect is targeting the Germantown Church of the Brethren, which celebrated its 300th anniversary last year.

“The congregation is more concerned about his well-being” than any damage inflicted thus far, said Kyerematen, who has served as pastor since 1989.

Anyone with information about the break-ins is asked to contact PPD’s Northwest Detective Division at 215-686-3353/3354; call or text 215-686-TIPS (8477); or go to