Vandals break into church, set fires that destroyed meals for needy kids

Vandals destroy thousands of meals for needy children

DOUGLAS COUNTY, Ga. — Arsonists attacked a church and poured toxic chemicals on thousands of meals prepared for needy children for spring break.

The director of the food ministry at Lithia Springs Church of God showed Channel 2's Tom Regan how vandals broke through a kitchen door and set small fires in the kitchen Saturday night.

“They fixed themselves a meal, and then came out here and doused everything with chemicals,” said Brenda Kirk.

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Kirk said food prepared for 450 children during spring break -- breakfast, lunch and snacks was contaminated and had to be thrown away.

Cans of food exposed in the pantry exposed to heat from the kitchen fires are no longer safe to consume.

Kirk doesn't know who vandalized her mission or why, but investigators told her one possible motive on their mind.

“They think it's some kids trying to do an initiation to get into a gang,” Kirk said.

But after hearing about the news, the community stepped up to help the children.


“It's terrible, it's horrible to do this to the children,” neighbor Johnathan Darity said.

There was a steady stream of people dropping off food at the church.

“I was crying, when I was buying the food for the kids,” Michelle Strutton said.

Kirk said she's immensely grateful to everyone who stepped up to replenish the food supplies in time for spring break next week.