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Arson suspected in Wilson Mall fire

Posted on June 23, 2022

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Firefighters gather at the Wilson Mall entrance as a Wilson Fire/Rescue Services ladder truck waits nearby on Wednesday.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Firefighters gather at the Wilson Mall entrance as a Wilson Fire/Rescue Services ladder truck waits nearby on Wednesday.

Wilson firefighters R. Godwin and J. Henry replace plywood covering a broken window where a fire started in a Wilson Mall unit on Wednesday.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Wilson firefighters R. Godwin and J. Henry replace plywood covering a broken window where a fire started in a Wilson Mall unit on Wednesday.

Wilson Fire/Rescue Services firefighters respond to the Wilson Mall after a small fire was reported Wednesday.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Wilson Fire/Rescue Services firefighters respond to the Wilson Mall after a small fire was reported Wednesday.

Firefighters gather at the Wilson Mall entrance as a Wilson Fire/Rescue Services ladder truck waits nearby on Wednesday.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Firefighters gather at the Wilson Mall entrance as a Wilson Fire/Rescue Services ladder truck waits nearby on Wednesday.

Wilson firefighters R. Godwin and J. Henry replace plywood covering a broken window where a fire started in a Wilson Mall unit on Wednesday.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Wilson firefighters R. Godwin and J. Henry replace plywood covering a broken window where a fire started in a Wilson Mall unit on Wednesday.

Wilson firefighters R. Godwin and J. Henry replace plywood covering a broken window where a fire started in a Wilson Mall unit on Wednesday.
Wilson Fire/Rescue Services firefighters respond to the Wilson Mall after a small fire was reported Wednesday.
Firefighters gather at the Wilson Mall entrance as a Wilson Fire/Rescue Services ladder truck waits nearby on Wednesday.

dwilson@wilsontimes.com | 252-265-7818

Wilson police are investigating a suspicious fire in the former Bath & Body Works store at the vacant Wilson Mall.

Firefighters from Wilson Fire/Rescue Services responded around 5:45 p.m. Wednesday near the mall’s main entrance.

“We had a small fire. We forced entry, extinguished it and then we re-secured the mall back,” said Battalion Chief Wesley Thornton.

Bath & Body Works was located just left of the main entrance.

“It was just inside the window, maybe 10 feet just inside,” Thornton said.

Around 19 personnel and several fire units responded. Thornton said no one was injured.

“We had a bystander that told us he thought he saw some juveniles in here, and the police department is trying to investigate and collaborate that story,” he said.

Thornton said the investigation was turned over to the police.

Sgt. Eric McInerny, public information officer for the Wilson Police Department, confirmed police are reviewing the case.

“Officers did take a report for an arson at the mall yesterday,” McInerny said Thursday. “Typically, arsons are assigned to an investigator.”

The mall has been vacant for nearly a decade since its owner, the Augusta, Georgia-based Hull Property Group, closed the building in early 2013.

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