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Originally published Wednesday, June 10, 2009 at 4:20 PM

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Man charged with burglary in church vandalism

Daniel Saunders, 45, was charged with second-degree burglary and malicious mischief for allegedly trashing the foyer of the Unity Church of God In Christ on Renton Avenue South Saturday morning.

Seattle Times staff reporter

A man who allegedly vandalized a Seattle church early Saturday morning was charged Wednesday with second-degree burglary.

Bail was set at $25,000 for Daniel Saunders, 45, who police say was completely nude when he vandalized Unity Church of God In Christ and cut himself extensively, leaving blood and broken glass behind.

Saunders also was charged with malicious mischief for breaking the windshield, and driver's side window and mirror of a pickup parked across the street from the church, leaving blood inside it as well.

The man was reportedly infected with hepatitis C, which requires treating the damaged church as a biohazard.

Saunders' bail was initially set at $10,000, but after a review of jail records, the state found he had been released from prison a day before the incident and raised his bail because of his immediate recidivism. Drugs were a factor in the incident.

According to charging documents from the King County Prosecutor's Office, the church will have to relocate its Sunday services for the next 30 days because of the damage and biohazard.

Saunders is scheduled to be arraigned at the King County Courthouse on June 24.

Phillip Lucas: 206-515-5632 or plucas@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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