‘What are we going to do now?’ Fire at Family Dollar impacts neighbors who relied on the store

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MILWAUKEE -- A juvenile is in custody after fire destroyed the Family Dollar store near Hampton and Teutonia on Saturday, Aug. 18, police said. The store has been deemed a total loss, and that is impacting the elderly and many other neighbors who relied on the store for food and other essentials. Firefighters were back on scene Sunday night.

Regime Wilson

"I'm just trying to figure out how it happened," said Regime Wilson.

A day later, bottles, folders and Christmas ornaments lined the parking lot in front of the store's entrance. Police said a juvenile was taken into custody at the scene, but they have not confirmed whether that person is responsible for setting the fire.

"I just wish our young people would get a grip," said Beverly Pittman, neighbor.

Pittman has lived in the neighborhood since 1970. She said she relies on the store for food and convenience.

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"It was like, devastating. Really. All the fire trucks had come and then we realized it was Family Dollar -- so what are we going to do now?" said Pittman.

Flames shot through the store just before 4 p.m. Saturday. It burned for hours -- with smoke rolling through the streets.

"We couldn't even see, it was so out-of-control," said Lakeisha Taylor.

Investigators said the building appears to be a total loss. Fire crews returned Sunday afternoon to assess the damage.

Wilson, 17, said he's upset to hear someone his own age may have been involved with this crime. Wilson said whoever did this has burned the whole neighborhood.

"I came here every day. This wasn't necessary. It's like, why burn down the store? What do you get from that?" said Wilson.

The investigation is ongoing. FOX6 News reached out to Family Dollar's corporate office Sunday, but we haven't heard back.

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