Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom said Steven Fay, 34, walked to the front of the All Saints Catholic Church during a Saturday evening service and poured a jar of yellow liquid, suspected to be urine, onto the altar and a copy of the Book of the Gospels from the New Testament, the St. Paul (Minn.) Pioneer Press reported Wednesday.
"I hate Christians," Fay was quoted as shouting while being detained by churchgoers, including an off-duty police officer from South Dakota.
Backstrom said the damage to the church property was estimated at $550. Fay was charged with felony second-degree property damage instead of a misdemeanor charge because the target of the crime was a religious institution.
"It could be construed as a hate-related crime," Backstrom said.
Fay has a history of mental illness, having faced three mental illness-related civil commitment cases in Dakota County between 1999 and 2008, Backstrom said.