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Fire damages historic Indianapolis Catholic church

INDIANAPOLIS – A fire that filled a 175-year-old Roman Catholic church in downtown Indianapolis with dense black smoke caused an estimated $15,000 in damage to the historic church.

Police and fire crews responded about 4 a.m. Wednesday to simultaneous burglary and fire alarms sounding at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church.

Fire Department Capt. Rita Burris told The Indianapolis Star (http://indy.st/15PSRVL) that firefighters found a small fire in the back of the church and extinguished it within five minutes.

She said the building sustained an estimated $15,000 in damage. The fire’s cause remains under investigation and police haven’t determined whether the church was burglarized.

Burris says the church’s pastor told firefighters he would cancel services due to the ongoing investigation.

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