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A man is in custody, suspected of arson after a Pierce County church was destroyed in a fire Thursday morning.

It started around 12:30 a.m. at Golgotha Moldavian Baptist Church in Midland. There were also fires at a vacant home and a car nearby, both of which were put out quickly.

Firefighters fought the church fire offensively for about 45 minutes and then switched to a defensive mode.

Police say a man was seen walking away from the church. He was later found at a home that police believe he broke into in order to hide.

Police say the 30-year-old man admitted to setting the fires. He has been booked on three counts of arson and two counts of burglary.

The church is considered a complete loss.

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