Incident Summary:

07/12/2020: An assailant drove a minivan into the front of a church and threw and incendiary device, began dousing gasoline, and set it on fire in Ocala, Florida, United States. There were no reported casualties in the attack. No group claimed responsibility for the incident. Police arrested Steven Shields who later confessed, claiming he had issues with the Catholic Church.



United States

North America

region/u.s. state:


Near Ocala

Location Details:
The incident occurred along State Road 200.

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Armed Assault
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Religious Figures/Institutions
Name of Entity Queen of Peace Catholic Church
Specific Description Church
Nationality of Target United States
Additional Information
Hostages No
Ransom No
Property Damage Yes
Extent of Property Damage Unknown
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Incendiary Gasoline or Alcohol
Vehicle (not to include vehicle-borne explosives, i.e., car or truck bombs)
Weapon Details
Gasoline and a white minivan were used in the attack.
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) No
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Anti-Christian extremists Yes (Confirmed: Unknown; Mode: Personal claim)
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators 1
Number of Captured Perpetrators 1
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 0 Fatalities / 0 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 0
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured 0
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
"Man charged in Florida church arson attack," Washington Post, July 12, 2020.
"Man Allegedly Plows Car Into Florida Church, Sets It Ablaze With Parishioners Inside; Two Other Christian Churches Burned Same Weekend By Amanda Prestigiacomo," Daily Wire, July 12, 2020.