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Arson investigators need help identifying suspect of Jacksonville daycare fire

Gingerbread House Learning Center is closed and more than 60 children are displaced.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Hiding behind a curtain of darkness, the arsonists moved through the Gingerbread House Learning Center and set it on fire.

The fire was on Mother's Day in the early morning hours.

"We're trying to figure out what's the motive doing this," said Danny Yeager.

Yeager is with the Florida Bureau of Fire and Arson Investigations. He and Kristie Calhoun, ATF Special Agent and Certified Fire Investigator have been on the case since it happened.

"It was not a random burglary," Calhoun said. "They did not take anything."

The suspects destroyed the daycare but left behind their images. Investigators recovered a disc from a damaged DVR and sent it to the ATF forensic lab in Virginia. The disc revealed far more than expected.

"Those individuals came into the preschool and poured gasoline and set fire," she said.

It showed what happened and gave investigators a snapshot of the suspects; one had a funny way of walking.

"If somebody know this individual and their characteristic on moving around, we firmly believe that they would know who that is," said Yeager. "We are just asking for their help."

The daycare serves children some from Foster Care, most are from refugee families. Could hate be the motive for the fire?

"We don't have anything that shows it is a hate crime or would indicate that," Calhoun said.

Marieka Richards and her family own the facility. She has seen the pictures and felt encouraged but she is still puzzled.

"We don't recognize anyone in the video,' Richards said.

She doesn't recognize any of the suspects and she is still asking why?

"I can't think of any reason unless it was racially motivated," she said.

In the meantime, the daycare is closed and more than 60 children are displaced.

"It is devastating to children and families in the neighborhood," said Richards, "they don't have anyone to take care of them."

Investigators need your help in identifying the suspects.

You may be eligible for cash rewards up to $10,000.

If you can help call 1-877-NO-ARSON (877-662-7766)

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