Investigators Still Searching for Clues

By: Lori Jane Gliha
By: Lori Jane Gliha

Police say they've taped off the area surrounding the East Lansing Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. They are treating the scene as if it were a crime scene, but they are not sure whether foul play was involved.

Leo Allaire, the public information officer for the East Lansing Fire Department, said a broken glass door near the side of the church could indicate foul play. Juli Liebler, an East Lansing police officer, also indicated the police department thought the scene seemed suspicious.

Investigators caution church and community members that they will not know what caused the fire until the investigation is complete. That could take several days.

They have narrowed down the origin of the fire. Allaire said it might have started in the kitchen, part of a hallway, or in an all-purpose room.

Some church members say they helped build the 28,000 sq foot building forty years ago. Many church members say they are anxious to rebuild.

Bruce Dale, president of the Lansing Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints stake, said it could cost more than $5 million and nearly two years to build a new church building. He said the church members from around the world send tithings to church headquarters in Salt Lake City, UT. Some of those funds will help the Lansing church rebuild.

Dale said rebuilding the genealogical section of the church is the first priority. They will rebuild that - even if it is in a trailer or a small building -as soon as possible.


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