Man facing federal charges for church arson attack

RIO RANCHO, N.M. (KRQE) –  The man accused of setting fire to a Rio Rancho church in July is now accused of more crimes.

Gordon Schuler, 23, is facing federal charges for an arson attack. He is accused of setting fire to Peace Lutheran Church in Rio Rancho, causing major damage.

Now investigators have also linked Schuler to a burglary at the same church nine days earlier when high priced items, including a cell phone and TV were taken.

Police say the pastor’s office door was pried open and they found a screwdriver on the desk. Investigators say DNA on that screwdriver recently came back as a match to Schuler’s.

Schuler has also faced burglary, criminal damage and arson charges in three different cases earlier this year.

He is accused of breaking into a home, breaking into and setting fire to a real estate office and robbing a man.

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