Church Fires Penalty Raised

Church Fires Penalty Raised

A bill stiffening the penalty for setting fires in churches, schools and other public buildings in Connecticut has been passed by the State Legislature. Under the measure, imprisonment of from two to 20 years could be imposed for arson inevolving such buildings.

Present statutes divide buildings into two categories. One section applies to private dwellings and carries penalties up to 20 years; the other section covers all buildings not included in the first section and imposes terms of from six months to ten years. The new section brings churches and other public buildings under the section providing the heavier penalty.

The bill was introduced in the Connecticut Senate following two disastrous fires in Hartford last December. One of tlie fires completely destroyed St. Joseph’s Cathedral and the other caused heavy damage to St. Patrick’s Church.

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