The Dubuque Police Department says a 13-year-old has been charged in connection with an arson at the Sears at Kennedy Mall on December 15.
Lieutenant Scott Baxter says fire fighters and police officers were called to the store at around 1:05 p.m. on December 15 for a fire alarm. When they arrived, crews found heavy smoke on the second floor. They say a fire had been intentionally set in the men's bathroom.
Baxter says a 13-year-old boy has been charged with first degree arson and reckless use of fire. The second charge stems from another fire the teen allegedly set on December 14 in a different bathroom in the mall. Baxter says that fire is believed to have put itself out before causing any damage. Authorities learned of that fire while investigating the Sears fire.
The teen has been taken into custody and is being held in juvenile detention.
First degree arson is punishable by up to 25 years in prison. Reckless use of fire is punishable by up to one year in jail and between $315 and $1,875 in fines.
Damage to the Sears store could exceed $100,000.
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