‘Pure hate over nothing:’ Apparent hate messages found at the scene of 2 Middleburg house fires

MIDDLEBURG, Fla. — UPDATE 9:01 p.m.- Clay County Sheriff’s Office considers both fires suspicious and confirmed that both locations displayed hate messages.


Action News Jax is learning more about two house fires that happened Monday morning in Middleburg where hate messages were found.

Clay County Fire Rescue responded to the fires on Conifer Circle and on Sharon Lane.


Both homes were unoccupied and authorities said the two homes were recently built and were for sale.

Clay County Sheriff’s Office also responded because of apparent hate messages that were left behind.

A neighbor snapped a photo of the front of one of the houses that was on fire.

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The neighbor said the sign in front of the house reads, “This is our land ... Latinos are not welcome.”

“I am so aggravated, people have no reason to hate, to pure hate over nothing,” neighbor Lillie Pratt said.

The fires at the two homes happened around the same time, CCSO said.

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Pratt said the smoke coming from the home on Conifer Circle “was probably a good 10-12 feet high.”

CCSO gave Action News Jax a statement that reads, in part: “At each location, a message was left behind. The messages left behind indicated a potential bias based motive.”

While deputies are still investigating, Pratt has a message to those behind the fires.

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“You have no business in here at all,” she said.

The State Fire Marshal will be investigating the cause of both of the fires.

Coming up on CBS47 and FOX30 Action News Jax at 6, Alexus Cleavenger will speak to the realtor for both of the homes.

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