Reward offered for information about church fire

1:09 PM, Dec 14, 2012   |    comments
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Update 12/14/12 12:08 p.m.

The Campbell County Sheriff and the Tennessee Bomb and Arson Section are jointly offering a $2,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the fire at Findale Church of God.  

Anyone with information is encouraged to call the sheriff's office at 423-562-7446 or the Tennessee Bomb and Arson Section at 615-741-3030.

Previous story

If you asked Fincastle Church of God Reverend Mike Smith the possible cause of a Sunday morning fire at his church, he would not have imagined it was another person.

"It was arson and that just really shocked me so much," Rev. Smith told 10News Thursday. "You know, you have things that set in your mind but you never dream of it."

Sheriff Robbie Goins met with the church pastor Thursday morning to inform him that evidence pointed to arson.  They have no information yet on possible suspects or how exactly the fire was started.

"Makes you feel sad that in the world we're living in these last few days, it does something to you, like you've been violated. something you worked so hard to do," he added.

On Wednesday, the church's youngest members carried on with preplanned caroling, trying to get their minds over the blaze. Now, the leader has to prepare to tell them this was criminal in nature.

"Explaining to them that there's evil and there's good, and there's evil out there," he said.

The reverend said he does not know any suspects responsible. He is asking the community for two things: tips to lead to an arrest and to "just pray for us."

The church will meet for a service this Sunday afternoon at 4:00 at the Campbell County Christian Academy in Lafollette.

Previous Story: "Fire that destroyed Campbell Co. church was arson"

Investigators have determined that a fire that destroyed the sanctuary of a Campbell County church was intentionally set.

The fire happened early Sunday morning at Fincastle Church of God in LaFollette.  Despite the efforts of firefighters from four departments, the church was lost.

Sheriff Robbie Goins met with the church pastor Thursday morning, to inform him that evidence pointed to arson.  They have no information yet on possible suspects or how exactly the fire was started.

The church will meet for a service this Sunday afternoon at 4:00 at the Campbell County Christian Academy in Lafollette.

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