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Update: Surveillance Photos Released in Coach's Bar Arson - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Update: Surveillance Photos Released in Coach's Bar Arson

Posted: Updated:

AUGUST 13 UPDATE

The Moorhead Police Department is releasing surveillance video images of two men that are considered to be "persons of interest" in the Coach's bar arson investigation.

The fire happened in the early morning hours on July 9. Police investigators would like to hear from anyone that can identify both or either of the men.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Red River Regional Dispatch Center at (701) 451-7660 and ask to speak with the on-duty Moorhead Supervisor.     

TUESDAY, JULY 9 UPDATE:

A fire at a long closed Moorhead bar has been officially ruled arson. An investigation by the State Fire Marshal found the fire at the former Coach's Bar started on the main floor of the kitchen area.

The fire was reported about 2:30 Monday morning.  When firefighters arrived they found a door open and bedding material inside. The building has been closed for several years.

Police and fire investigators are looking for suspects in the case.  The State Fire Marshal's Office is offering a reward of up to $2,500 to anyone that can provide specific information that leads to the arrest and conviction. 

The Tip Hotline number is 1-800-723-2020.

Tips can also be left with the Moorhead Police on-duty shift supervisor by calling (701) 451-7660.

ORIGINAL STORY:

Firefighters were called to a fire at the old Coach's Bar in downtown Moorhead early Monday morning.

Moorhead's Fire Chief Rich Dyson says that the building has been vacant for years and they believe it had no electricity on. 

He also says that a back door was found opened, leading them to believe that a person entered and then left the building through that back door after starting the fire.

The Minnesota State Fire Marshall is on her way to investigate further and Chief Dyson says that she should arrive around 2 p.m. 

Until then, the area will remain a crime scene. Moorhead Police Lieutenant, Mike Detloff says a police officer who was driving by spotted smoke coming out of the building around 2:30 a.m.

When firefighters arrived they worried about sending people into the building because of the way the roof is designed. Dyson notes that of one truss fails in this type of roof the whole roof could collapse. 

Firefighters were able to get the seat of the fire under control shortly after they arrived. 

Chief Dyson says that they have trained in the building many times and were concerned that there would be a fire someday. 

Coach's closed in 2005, shortly after the city council refused to renew its liquor license.

The State Fire Marshall along with Moorhead Fire and Police will wait till an investigation is finished until they can officially call the fire at arson, a search for the arsonist will be handled by Moorhead Police.

 

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