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Auburn teens earn reward for helping police in arson case

AUBURN - Two teenage boys who helped Auburn police solve a 2006 arson case earned a reward from the state fire marshal.

Bud Ausborn of Georgia Arson Control and State Fire Marshal Mickey Hunt presented two $2,000 reward checks to Chief Fred Brown and Detective Michael Fugett this month. The policemen accepted the reward on behalf of the boys, who wished to remain anonymous for their safety.

The boys gave police information about a melted water bottle filled with gasoline that burned a Jeep Cherokee on Trotter's Lane in Saddlecreek Subdivision on Feb. 10, 2006. The fire did an estimated $7,000 worth of damage, Ausborn said.

"The boys heard her bragging about setting the fire and told the police," Ausborn said.

The information led Auburn police to arrest a 16-year-old Auburn girl five days after the crime, Ausborn said.

The girl was charged with two felonies - first-degree arson and first-degree criminal damage to property, Auburn Sgt. Lee Lapsky said. She was later convicted, Lapsky said.

The Georgia Arson Control Program and local law enforcement agencies across the state depend on tips from the public to solve crimes, Ausborn said. Rewards up to $10,000 are given to individuals whose information helps solve arson crimes. To report an arson, call 800-282-5804.