Manassas Journal Messenger | Investigation continues in Dumfries church fire

Prince William County Fire Marshals are still working to determine the cause of the fire that destroyed Abundant Life Baptist Church in Dumfries on Friday.

Authorities completed their on-site investigation Saturday and have yet to determine the cause of the fire, said Capt. Tim Taylor, Prince William County Fire and Rescue spokesman.

“We have yet to rule anything out as the possible cause,” said Olufunke Owolabi, department spokeswoman. “The incident is still under investigation and we ask that anyone with information please come forward.”

Two EMTs from the nearby Dumfries-Triangle rescue squad detected the fire after smelling smoke in the air just before 1 a.m. Friday. They found the church, which is at 19250 Curtis Drive in Dumfries, engulfed in flames.

The church, which housed both the Abundant Life Baptist Church and the First Romanian Baptist Church, was destroyed.

It took an estimated 50 firefighters to put out the fire.

A prayer meeting was held the previous night, but ended around 9 p.m. Pastor Paul Brown was the last to leave the building at 9:30 p.m. A police officer went past the church during his nightly rounds around 11 p.m., but did not see anything suspicious, Taylor said.

The church is situated on top of a hill off Curtis Road about a half-mile off Jefferson Davis Highway in Dumfries, but cannot be easily seen from the road.

Prince William County Fire and Rescue asks that anyone with information call the fire marshal’s office at (703) 792-6360.

Staff writer David Stegon can be reached at (703) 878-8065.

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