Minister sentenced to 2 years for setting fire

Faked “Hate” crime

A black Baptist minister from Chesterfield County was sentenced Thursday to serve two years in prison for setting his front porch ablaze in a phony hate crime attack that included racist graffiti he painted to deceive police.

Olander D. Cuthrell, 41, a minister of music at Gospel Shepherd Baptist Church, told the judge he was both ashamed and embarrassed for pouring a mixture of oil and gasoline across part of his family’s front porch and igniting it March 15 after becoming overwhelmed by financial problems.

Minutes before, he spray-painted the N-word on two sides of his rental house in the 7800 block of Little Ridge Court to divert attention from himself and bolster his claim of being the target of a racially motivated attack.

He further perpetuated the fraud by igniting a 16-ounce bottle filled with oil and gas inside an inoperable, family-owned 1992 BMW parked outside the house.

Read more at Richmond Times Dispatch