Man Faces Sentencing For Burning Black Church Over Obama Election

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — A white Massachusetts man convicted of burning down a predominantly black church because he was angry with President Barack Obama‘s election faces sentencing in federal court.

Michael Jacques was convicted in April of various charges in connection with the fire, including conspiracy against civil rights. He is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday in U.S. District Court in Springfield. He faces 10 to 60 years in prison.

Prosecutors say Jacques and two friends burned down the Macedonia Church of God in Christ in Springfield the night of Obama’s 2008 election in an act of racism. Jacques has said he was at his parents’ house that night.

The two other men have pleaded guilty in connection with the fire.

No one was injured. The church has since been rebuilt.

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