Two Teens Caught on Burglary and Arson Spree

I’m going to go out on a limb and say maybe these two needed a bit more supervision:

“Had they gotten inside the church, I don’t know what would’ve been done,” Rev. Larry Cox, Pastor of Homeland Park Baptist Church said.

He stood inside the church nursery where there was a smashed glass window which had to be boarded. Deputies with the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office said it was all done by two boys, a 13 and 14 years old.

“I do want them to know that I don’t hate them. We can’t hate children and would like for them to get their lives straightened out,” Cox said.

Investigators said the two boys first broke into a shed at the church’s family life center.

“We believe that they broke the glass out and got that diesel fuel that they used to try and set the school on fire with it,” said youth minister, Jason Lingefelt.

He said he got the call Monday morning around 4:00 a.m. and rushed over. He said a five-gallon diesel canister was swiped from the shed.


Investigators said that’s when the boys walked about a mile to Homeland Park Elementary School and tried to set it on fire.

“I woke up, it was about 3:00 a.m. ., but it was all quiet out here then, ” said Boyce Baughn, who lives next door to the school.

However, investigators said that’s not the case and they found burned pieces of paper and church tithing envelopes at the scene.

“It’s Homeland Park, it’s just wild down here,” Leslie Day, another neighbor said.

Indeed. A 13 and 14-year-old wandering around in the wee hours of the morning should not only have raised eyebrows, but maybe led to a police report when the parents noticed their little darlings were missing. Granted kids like to sneak out, but I’m going to assume that by the time your kids work their way up to burning churches and elementary schools there may have been some signs that you needed to keep a closer eye on them.

Greenville Online is reporting that each of the boys are facing second-degree arson charges and three counts of second-degree burglary.

The Independent Mail is reporting an interesting fact that may mean the kids weren’t as malevolent as the case makes them sound:

The fire alarm inside the storage room was pulled around 2:30 a.m., according to the report.


“After they tried to start the fire at the school and pulled the alarm, it looks like they ran over to the church,” Tribble said. “Apparently, they broke into the family life center there, where they tried to start another fire. People driving by the church saw them trying to break in to another building on the church property and called 911. That’s when the deputies found the boys and took them into custody.”

Pulling alarms seems like a ploy to ensure the fires don’t get out of control. On the other hand the same report goes on to claim the kids are being looked at for other fires.

WSPA has has video.

Hmmm. Two teens out late at night doing something stupid? Anyone think maybe drugs and alcohol were involved?


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