Man charged in fires

State Law Enforcement Division investigators were called to the scene of a fire June 30 at Emmanuel Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith in Smoaks.

SMOAKS — State agents have accused a man of setting fire last week to two Colleton County structures, including a church.

State Law Enforcement Division warrants charge Steven Jeffery Davidson, 19, of Smoaks, with second-degree burglary and two counts of second-degree arson.

Davidson is accused of breaking into Emmanuel Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith on Lowcountry Highway on June 30 and setting a fire. Colleton County firefighters arrived about 3:30 a.m. to find heavy fire in an addition to the church in the rear of the building.

Firefighters knocked down the flames within 15 minutes, but the fire had extended into the main building and the attic, County Fire and Rescue Director Barry McRoy said. He said the fire was under control in about 45 minutes, but the addition was destroyed and the sanctuary suffered heat, smoke and water damage.

On May 29 fire broke out at a mobile home next to the church. McRoy said the home was vacant and was to be moved that day. An affidavit said Davidson admitted that he entered the home and set fire to a curtain in a back bedroom.

McRoy said another vacant mobile home burned on the same road July 1 and was an arson case. It is not clear whether anyone faces charges related to that fire.

A SLED spokeswoman did not return a phone call Wednesday night.