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Investigators Seek Public’s Help in Solving Church Fire

7/29/2004

CONTACT: Nina Banister
(850) 413-2842

LAMONT-Investigators with the State Fire Marshal's Office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, and Jefferson County Fire Department are asking for the public's help to find who is responsible for destroying Lamont Baptist Church in April. A $2,500 reward is being offered.

The April 27 fire at the church, located at 121 River Road, was determined to have been the result of arson. The fire destroyed the church sanctuary, built in 1937, and adjoining fellowship hall.

"It is unconscionable that anyone would destroy a house of worship," said Florida's Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Tom Gallagher. "We encourage anyone with any information that may help us arrest and convict whoever is responsible for this crime to come forward."

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office at 850-997-2023 or the state arson hotline, toll free 1-877-662-7766 (1-877-NOARSON). Callers providing information can remain anonymous. The Florida Advisory Committee on Arson Prevention is offering a $2,500 reward for anyone providing information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for this fire.

The Bureau of Fire and Arson Investigations is the law enforcement branch of the Division of State Fire Marshal that assists other state and local law enforcement agencies in the investigation of fires of suspicious origin.