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Cause of fire at Mormon church in Van Nuys under investigation

The cause of a fire at a Mormon church in Van Nuys early Wednesday is under investigation, authorities said.

A Los Angeles Fire Department battalion chief noticed smoke drifting across the 405 Freeway at Saticoy Street about 2:15 a.m., LAFD spokesman Brian Humphrey said.

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Seeking the source, the chief called on an L.A. police helicopter airborne nearby. The aircraft spotted the fire at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the 15500 block of Saticoy, Humphrey said.

Firefighters found heavy fire in a kitchen, classroom, hallway and attic, the department said. The main sanctuary of the church was spared from any direct fire damage.

It took crews about an hour to put out the blaze. Church officials were still calculating the losses, Humphrey said.

Twitter: @Brittny_Mejia

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