Pompano Beach, Florida
Deacon Attacked During Sunday Service
Winter Haven, Florida
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Man arrested after tackling deacon at Pompano Beach church
POMPANO BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – A man was looking for mercy in a Broward County courtroom after he was captured on surveillance video tackling a deacon in the middle of a service at a church in Pompano Beach, leaving the victim bruised and shaken up.
The security footage shows the assailant, identified as Thomas Eisel, running toward Deacon George Labelle during Mass at St. Coleman Catholic Church, Saturday evening.
Prior to the attack, Deacon Labelle is seen speaking to the congregation while he paces back and forth.
Moments later, Eisel is seen standing up and walking away from the pews before he charges at Deacon Labelle.
The men are seen tussling for several seconds before church members hop to their feet to help the deacon.
“Naturally they want try to defend him. You don’t know what’s going through the guy’s mind,” said parishioner Tim Gilmore. “You don’t know whether he’s got a knife or something.”
Eisel was placed under arrest and appeared in bond court over the weekend. He was charged with one count of battery and one count of disturbing the peace.
“It’s kind of infuriating, you know, that all that stuff is going on out there,” said parishioner Jay Parcel. “It’s just not safe anymore.”
Court records show Eisel is on probation after being convicted back in 2017 for battery on a person over the age of 65.