Cross in park ignites debate

Published On: Dec 24 2012 05:25:42 PM CST   Updated On: Dec 24 2012 06:44:10 PM CST
TOMBALL, Texas -

A large cross in a northwest Harris County park is igniting a debate.

The 12-foot-high cross has stood in Spring Creek Park in Tomball since the late 1970s. It was erected to mark the graves of slaves and freed slaves.

But the park is owned by the county and a group based in Washington, D.C. said the cross does not belong on public ground.

The organization called Americans United for Separation of Church and State cites a clause of the First Amendment, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."

The group believes the cross is a constitutional violation and sent a letter to Harris County asking that it be removed.

County attorneys said their lawyers believe the cross does not violate the constitution because it was not placed their for religious reasons.