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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, September 28, 2006

13-year-old boys charged in Wai'anae church arson

By Curtis Lum
Advertiser Staff Writer

Two Wai'anae boys were charged last night with first-degree arson in connection with the Sept. 12 fire that destroyed part of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Wai'anae.

The boys, 13, also were charged with two counts of second-degree burglary in connection with a Sept. 5 break-in at the church and a Sept. 12 burglary during which, police said, the boys set the fire. A 12-year-old boy also was charged in the Sept. 5 burglary.

The three boys were being held in the Alder Street detention center last night. A hearing scheduled for today will determine if they remain in custody or are released to their parents. There is no bail in the juvenile system.

The boys were arrested at their school Tuesday.

The fire destroyed the church's gymnasium, kitchen, library and office, and caused about $2.5 million in damage. Church officials said they hope to reopen the chapel and some classrooms next month.

In the Sept. 5 break-in, police said, the church was vandalized and ransacked.

Reach Curtis Lum at culum@honoluluadvertiser.com.