ATF says Kingdom Hall fire near Lacey was arson

The fire that destroyed the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall near Lacey on Friday has been determined to be arson, according to the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Spokesman Jason Chudy said Sunday the agency determined the cause was arson late Friday. He declined to comment on the evidence that pointed to arson because the incident is under investigation.

Lacey Fire District 3 responded to the call about 3:30 a.m. and found the building at 6526 Sixth Ave. SE engulfed in flames, The Olympian reported Friday.

The building was a total loss. No injuries were reported.

It was the fourth time this year that a Thurston County Kingdom Hall was the site of a suspicious fire. Flames destroyed the Kingdom Hall in Olympia in July, after an arson attempt there in March. Also in March, an arsonist targeted a Kingdom Hall in Tumwater.

At a Kingdom Hall in Yelm, a suspicious device was found near the building in August after someone fired multiple rounds at the building in May.

Up to $36,000 in total rewards is available for information that leads to an arrest and conviction in the incidents, Chudy said Sunday.

Anyone with information is asked to call the ATF at 888-283-8477, or call South Sound Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.