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Authorities: Blaze at Freeport home considered 'suspicious'

January 24, 2020 Digital Media Exclusive

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FREEPORT — A blaze that destroyed a home last weekend is considered “suspicious,” but the cause remains undetermined, according to authorities.

“I can't rule out an arson,” Trooper DuWayne Baird, a deputy fire marshal, said Friday. “But at this point, because of the extent of the damage, I can't say what caused the fire.”

The home, owned by Gregory Shoop, was insured. Baird ruled the house a “total loss,” and pegged the damage at $150,000.

Baird said Freeport police are assisting in his investigation. The insurance adjuster is also conducting an independent investigation.

The one-story home on Washington Street was being remodeled due to a fire four months earlier when flames engulfed it a second time Jan. 19, fire officials said. A neighbor called 911 around 4 a.m. after seeing the fire.

Anyone with information about the fire is asked to call state police at 724-284-8100 or Freeport police at 724-295-4897.

This is an excerpt from a larger article that appeared in Sunday's Butler Eagle. Subscribe online or in print to read the full article.

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