Thief breaks into Florida church, causes damage, and baptizes himself in pool

A man from Georgia has been arrested after breaking into a church in Florida and causing significant damage. In a bizarre turn of events, the suspect then proceeded to baptize himself in the church’s sanctuary pool. The incident took place at the Emerald Beach Church of God in Panama City Beach, where the perpetrator, Derek Porter, used a cinderblock to smash a window and gain entry.

Upon receiving a burglary call, officers from the Bay County Sheriff’s Office arrived at the scene to find the aftermath of Porter’s destructive spree. A female church employee had managed to escape when she heard the sound of breaking glass. The police statement revealed that Porter had caused approximately $8,000 worth of damage to the church during his unauthorized entry.

Not content with the destruction alone, Porter proceeded to load several electronics, including a television and a computer, into his truck. He also took the church’s money bag. To make matters worse, the suspect was found to be in possession drug paraphernalia and methamphetamine when he was arrested by police. It was later discovered that Porter was already out on bond for a previous burglary in Georgia.

In a rather perplexing twist, Porter claimed to have no recollection of certain moments inside the church. However, he did remember baptizing himself in the church’s baptistry pool. According to the police statement, Porter alleged that “something” was holding his head underwater during the baptism.

Porter now faces multiple charges, including burglary of an occupied structure, criminal mischief, possession of methamphetamine, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He is currently being held in custody in the Bay County Jail on a bond of $19,500.

In body camera footage, deputies can be seen apprehending Porter and ensuring the safety of the church premises. The incident took an unexpected turn when a police dog decided to cool off in the baptismal pool, providing a moment of levity amidst the chaos.