Metro-East News

‘Suspicious’ fire damages vacant rental home in Belleville

It took the Belleville Fire Department three minutes and seven seconds to arrive at the burning house on Scarlet Drive, but the unoccupied residence was already showing flames in a fire the chief referred to as “suspicious.”

“Fire was showing through the front window,” when firefighters arrived about 12:30 a.m. Monday, said Fire Chief Tom Pour.

The rental home has been vacant for a couple of years, the owner told firefighters. He told investigators he had been at work.

“The house wasn’t secure; we used our accelerant canine (Sadie) to check the scene,” Pour said.

Pour said the house did not have gas or electric service, which was “another thing that makes it suspicious.”

Mary Cooley: 618-239-2535; @MaryCooleyBND