2 teens arrested in Berkeley Masonic Lodge fire, vandalism

ALVIN, S.C. (WCIV) -- Two teens were arrested and charged in connection to the fire and vandalism at a church and Masonic Lodge in the Alvin community.

According to the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office, two juveniles, ages 13 and 14, were taken into custody and are being housed at the Department of Juvenile Justice while a family court hearing is scheduled.

The teens have been charged with third-degree arson, second-degree burglary, malicious injury to real property, second-degree attempted burglary, and malicious injury to a place of worship.

Firefighters responded Friday evening to a fire at the Laurel Hill Masonic Lodge. While fighting the fire, officials found evidence that someone had vandalized and attempted to burglarize the Bethel Baptist Church across the street from the lodge.

Berkeley County Sheriff Wayne DeWitt described the Alvin community as close-knit and said he "knew how deeply this affected the residents there andexpressed his pleasure at being able to quickly bring this investigation to a speedy conclusion."

DeWitt said the State Law Enforcement Division and the FBI assisted in the investigation.