2 charged with arson, burglary of Pelion church

Mug Russ

Two Lexington men are facing multiple charges in connection with a break-in last month at Florence
Baptist Church in Pelion.

According to arrest warrants, Timothy Justin Russell, 25, and Austin Scott Miller, 21, have both been charged with arson, burglary and malicious injury to property.

“These two men broke a window to get inside the church and damaged furniture, electronics and other household items valued at more than $2,000,” Lexington County Sheriff Jay Koon said. “They’re charged with arson for setting fire to books inside the church.”

Koon said Russell and Miller stole a laptop and a camera from the church. The camera was recovered from the home of one of the defendants.


Russell and Miller were released from the Lexington County Detention Center after each of them posted a $67,000 bond.

According to Koon, the investigation into the church break-in is still open. Anyone with more information should call the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department at 803-785-2400 or CrimeStoppers at 888-CRIME-SC. Anonymous tips can be submitted at

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