Video shows man tackling deacon during mass at St. Coleman Catholic Church in Pompano Beach

Thomas Eisel
Posted at 8:19 AM, Feb 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-25 08:19:51-05

POMPANO BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- A man was captured on surveillance video tackling a deacon who was conducting a Saturday evening service at a South Florida church.

Security video from the church shows the man sitting in a front pew at St. Coleman Catholic Church on Pompano Beach in Saturday evening while the deacon was walking back and forth speaking to the congregation. The man then stood up and charged the deacon.

As stunned parishioners looked on, several other churchgoers then ran to help as the man tussled with the deacon on the floor at the front of the church, news outlets reported.

Thomas Eisel, 28, was arrested on charges of battery and disturbing the peace. A Broward County judge ordered Eisel held without bond for violating his probation in a Volusia County case.

The Archdiocese of Miami told WSVN the deacon suffered some bruises but is otherwise OK.