Man arrested after Regina church burning

A 31-year old man has been charged after the attempted arson of a Regina Catholic church.

Jordan Willet was arrested last Friday and now faces charges of alleged arson, disguise with intent to commit a criminal act and two counts of failing to comply with a probation order. 

The fire in the early hours of Feb. 12 at the Blessed Sacrament Parish was quickly extinguished by Regina Fire and Protective Services.

“Fire investigators reached out to police who began an arson investigation,” reads the release. “Over the past seven days, officers have been investigating, including reviewing security video from the area. As a result, officers were able to identify and locate a suspect.”

Willet was scheduled to appear in court Feb. 20.

A camera captured a suspect with his face covered pouring what appeared to be gasoline from a jerry can onto the church’s office entrance. 

The suspect can then be seen lighting the accelerant on fire before running away. 

“The alarm went off immediately when it detected smoke,” Fr. James Hentge told 980 CJME AM radio in an interview. “My Apple iPods picked up the alarm and alerted me… that there was an alarm going off in my home.”

The church, which is located in Regina’s downtown at 2039 Scarth St., had to cancel its Sunday mass as a result of the fire and its clean up. 

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre addressed these arsons publicly last month.

“There is no justification for burning down a church period. Regardless of the other information or justifications that people claim to use, there is never a justification to burn down a church,” said Poilievre.

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