Police: Man in custody for setting fire to Riverhead church

A man accused of setting a Riverhead church on fire has been arrested, police say.

News 12 Staff

Oct 28, 2019, 6:40 PM

Updated 1,722 days ago

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A man accused of setting a Riverhead church on fire has been arrested, police say.
The fire started just after 2 a.m. Saturday at Luz En Tu Senda on Roanoke Avenue.
Pastor Abner Garcia says the suspected arsonist started the fire in one of the trash bins that was against the church's back wall. He says neighbors who saw the fire called 911 and firefighters quickly responded.
Damage was done to the back wall on both the first and second floors. Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the back of the church.
Police say 33-year-old Lee Ragland, of Riverhead, was caught in the act on a surveillance camera. He is now in custody and has been charged with arson.
"We don't understand why he would do such a thing, but at the same time we don't hold any grudges against him," Garcia said. "We forgive him and we pray also and ask that God will also forgive him."
The pastor is waiting on insurance adjusters but thinks there is tens of thousands of dollars in damages.
No one was hurt in the fire.
Pastor Garcia says all services at the church will be canceled until they can repair the damage.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


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