LEESBURG, Ga. — A Sunday-afternoon fire at the Lee County Publix is being investigated as arson by Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgens’ office.
Glenn Allen, a spokesman for the insurance commissioner’s office, said the fire was set at around 3:45 p.m. Sunday at the 1212 U.S. 19 South grocery store. No injuries were reported, and the blaze was extinguished by the store’s sprinkler system. Customers and employees were evacuated.
Investigators estimate damage at the store to have been around $1,000.
“Anyone who would set fire to an occupied building should be considered extremely dangerous,” Hudgens said. “I want to remind everyone that any information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, could be important.”
Allen said Hudgens and the Georgia Arson Control Board are offering a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to an arrest in the case.
“We’re asking anyone with information, no matter how insignificant they might think it is, to come forward,” Allen said.
Anyone with information that might aid in the investigation, which Allen said is ongoing, is asked to call the state’s arson hotline at (800) 282-5804.