$2,500 reward offered in church arson investigation - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

$2,500 reward offered in church arson investigation

Surveillance video of the woman who is a person of interest in the arson. (Source: WMC Action News 5) Surveillance video of the woman who is a person of interest in the arson. (Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Source: WMC Action News 5) (Source: WMC Action News 5)

Investigators are offering a $2,500 reward to anyone who can help them find the person who set fire to a Memphis church in September.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Memphis Fire Department and the Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office is offering a $2,500 reward leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for damaging New Salem Fellowship Ministries.

"We're not shaken,” pastor Antonio Mattox said. “Again, we're operating in faith."

The fire happened at the church on September 28 just before Wednesday night services. Security cameras caught a video of a person walking behind the church. That person has not been identified.

Mobile users click here to see the damage caused by the fire.

Mattox said he has been overwhelmed with the love and support he has received from the community, but he’s still concerned that the person who started the fire is still out there.

"My prayers are...is Lord, protect all the other ministries,” he said. "We just hope that whomever this person is, that they won't continue to start fires or cause anybody any harm."

Mattox hopes someone will recognize what appears to be a woman in the video. He said the church has a camera mounted almost directly above where investigators told him the fire started.

"I'm praying that the Lord will lead the ATF agents, police, and give them an unction to find this person, or somebody call in and report who this person is,” Pastor Mattox said.

His message to the responsible person is to remember that nothing is unforgiveable with God, but they still need to be punished.

"Even though God will forgive you, you still need to pay for what you have done,” Mattox said.

Anyone with information leading to an arrest is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 901-528-CASH, State Arson hotline at 1-800-762-3017, or ATF at 1-888-ATF-FIRE (283-3473).

You can also report it via the ATF mobile app at www.reportit.com.

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