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$3 million San Antonio church fire investigated

Published On: Feb 05 2013 07:49:11 AM CST

SAN ANTONIO (AP) -

Federal arson officials now are among nearly three dozen investigators looking into a fire that gutted an historic San Antonio church.

The Childress Memorial Church of God in Christ went up in flames Friday. It's about a mile north of an area where at least five other fires over the past two months have been ruled as arson blazes.

A federal team from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives joined authorities who already include a forensic chemist, engineers and accelerant detection dogs.

San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood said investigators also are trying to stabilize the 100-year-old church and recover artifacts from the rubble that are of value to people who attended services there.  He's estimates the loss at $3 million.