Man breaks into Labadieville church, drinks alcohol, rings bells

Assumption Parish sheriff’s deputies arrested a Labadieville man who had activated church bells and was found inside the religious building Sunday night drinking alcohol with his shoes off, the Sheriff’s Office reported Monday.

Hamid Banisaaid, 32, 225 Redwood St., was booked into the Assumption Parish Detention Center in Napoleonville on a count of simple burglary of a religious building, deputies said in a news release.

Deputies were called to St. Philomena Catholic Church on Convent Street in Labadieville after the pastor reported hearing the church bells “going crazy,” deputies said.

The resident priest told deputies the bells, which are normally played for funeral services, are activated electronically from inside the church, deputies said.

Deputies said they found Banisaaid inside the church and that he admitted to activating the bells after entering the church. He added that he had been getting ready to play the piano when deputies arrived.

Deputies said it appeared Banisaaid entered the church by forcing a door open.

Banisaaid’s bail had not been set as of mid-Monday morning, deputies said.