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Teen pleads guilty to setting fire to LDS church, sentenced

Arson »Two teens accused of causing up to $2 million in damage.

First Published Mar 07 2012 02:37 pm • Last Updated Mar 07 2012 11:21 pm

One of two teens accused of burglarizing and then setting fire to an LDS church in Santaquin has pleaded guilty.

A 16-year-old boy entered a plea of guilty to arson in 4th District Juvenile Court late last week and was sentenced to a juvenile work camp, authorities said.

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A judge sentenced the teen to serve at least 90 days at Genesis, a juvenile work camp that’s designed to help defendants meet community service obligations and pay back victims for the damages they’ve caused, according to Utah County prosecutors and court officials.

After the 90-day period, the judge plans to hold a hearing to re-evaulate the case, officials said.

The 16-year-old and a 17-year-old boy are accused of causing up to $2 million in damage to the chapel on 200 East and 100 South.

Authorities allege that on Dec. 15, 2011, the pair went through a window of the church and broke into offices looking for money. The two allegedly told police they stole $7 from a desk before starting the blaze. Police have said they found multiple points of origin for the fire.

The 17-year-old, who has been having separate court hearings, has a hearing scheduled later this month. He faces a felony charge of aggravated arson along with some lesser charges.

The Salt Lake Tribune does not typically identify suspects charged in juvenile court.


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