SACRAMENTO COUNTY (CBS13) — A fireworks stand burned to the ground, then a nearby church caught fire in two incidents investigators believe are connected.
Members of the Hmong New Life Church got a late start restocking their booth after their stand caught fire overnight.
Cellphone pictures show the destruction along Del Paso Boulevard that fire investigators believe was the work of an arsonist.
“Luckily the fireworks stand did not have any fireworks inside of it,” said Roberto Padilla with Sacramento City Fire.
Pastor Fred Xiong is baffled why this would happen, and says the loss of time means much-needed sales have vanished.
“I really wish I could tell you how this could happen. I wish I knew,” he said. “This is really huge for us. Really huge for our church especially for the youth as we need to do fundraising for them.”
The fireworks stand wasn’t the only fire on Wednesday night. Blocks away, investigators believe another was intentionally set at the Calvary Christian Center.
“A portion of the inside of the church that was on fire. No major damage but the investigation is ongoing,” Padilla said.
Fire officials say since the fires were set only 20 minutes apart, and because neither had electrical issues, they believe an arsonist is the likely cause.