Harrisonburg police arrested a city man accused of tagging 19 police patrol cars late Sunday night with the phrase “In Satan We Trust.”

Christopher Parlette, 45, of Harrisonburg, is charged with felony property damage. He is also charged with misdemeanor carrying a concealed weapon.

Parlette was scheduled to appear in Rockingham County General District Court on Monday afternoon.

However, court staff said he was unfit to appear in front of a judge. He is now scheduled to appear in court today.

The investigation into Parlette began about 9 p.m. Sunday when a Harrisonburg officer noticed his police car was vandalized with a red marker.

He saw someone had written “In Satan We Trust” on the vehicle.

The officer then observed several other vehicles in the parking lot, located between West Elizabeth and West Wolfe streets in downtown Harrisonburg, had been vandalized.

The crime was captured on video surveillance. The footage, police say, helped them identify Parlette as a suspect. He was arrested a short time later.

It’s unclear what Parlette’s motive was, police say.

Several police agencies in the Shenandoah Valley, including the Page County Sheriff’s Office, have added decals in recent years that state “In God We Trust.” Harrisonburg’s vehicles don’t include the phrase.

Parlette was previously convicted in Harrisonburg of public intoxication and impeding traffic as a pedestrian in 2018.

He is being held at the Rockingham County Jail without bond.

Contact Pete DeLea at 574-6267 or pdelea@dnronline.com. Follow Pete on Twitter @pdelea_DNR

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