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James Reacts to St. Luke and St. Matthew Church Fire

Councilwoman offers reward for information leading to persons responsible for likely arson.


On December 23, 2012, early morning, a 2-alarm fire broke out at the Church of St. Luke and St. Matthew in Clinton Hill.

Over 100 firefighters responded to the incident at 520 Clinton Ave., at the over 120-year-old church. The FDNY believe that the fire started outside of the church’s main entrance around 4:30 a.m.

Due to the early hour, no one was hurt in the blaze, and the church sanctuary escaped significant damage. Four gas cans have been recovered near the scene, and the fire has been labeled suspicious by officials.

“This fire was a painful blow to an institution that has done and continues to do so much for the Clinton Hill community,” said Council Member Letitia James. “I am relieved that no one was harmed, and I urge anyone with information on the individual(s) responsible for this arson to come forward.“

The Church of St. Luke and St. Matthew had recently served as a base for Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. All church services are suspended at this time.

Anyone with tips related to the fire may contact the 88th Precinct police at (718) 636-6511, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

A reward of $1,000 is being offered for any information leading to arrest of individual(s) responsible for this heinous crime. Those interested in supporting rebuilding efforts should contact either the Church of St. Luke and St. Matthew at (718) 638-0686, or James's office at (718) 260-9191.


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