A Tennessee detective and pastor has sparked an investigation after reportedly suggesting the death penalty should be used against gays in a sermon earlier this month, local news station WVLT reports. In the June 2 sermon at All Scripture Baptist Church, Knox County Sheriff's Office detective Grayson Fritts reportedly said “our government, like the police, should enforce Leviticus 20:13.” That particular bible verse reads, “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.” Fritts also allegedly asserted that God gave “civil government” the authority to “send the police in 2019 out to these LGBT FREAKS and arrest them,” and called those who attended Pride parades “filthy animal[s].”
The sermon is reportedly under investigation by the Knox County District Attorney's Office. According to the sheriff’s office, Fritts asked for early retirement just days before giving the sermon and is confirmed for “workforce reduction” on July 19. In the meantime, Knox County Sheriff Tom Spangler said Fritts is on paid sick leave.