2005 Arlington arson case still mystery

  • Thu Jan 14th, 2010 10:03pm
  • News

By Diana Hefley Herald Writer

ARLINGTON — Authorities say their investigation into the fire that wiped out an Arlington furniture factory in 2005 remains open.

Federal investigators four years ago determined that someone intentionally set a blaze that destroyed Modern Furniture Manufacturing. The company was located at 6927 204th St. NE.

No one has been arrested in connection with the Oct. 30, 2005 arson, said Cheryl Bishop, a spokeswoman for the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

“We’d love to speak with anyone who hasn’t yet come forward to talk to us, anyone who saw anything suspicious or has heard rumors about the fire,” Bishop said recently.

The fire caused about $3.5 million in damage. The company’s owner, Norm Upton told The Herald in 2005 that the fire left about 60 employees out of work.

The factory hasn’t been rebuilt at the Arlington site, city spokeswoman Kristin Banfield said.

A $10,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of the person responsible for the fire, Bishop said.

Bishop declined to say if investigators identified a suspect in connection with the blaze.

More than 30 ATF agents were sent to help local police and fire investigators shortly after the factory was destroyed.

The case was turned over to the Arlington Police Department while agents from the Seattle ATF’s office continued to assist in the investigation.

That was at least the second time arson struck the business.

Back in 1992 firefighters were able to keep a fire from spreading through the building after someone lit a fire in a storage building that housed old machinery and scrap wood.

That fire caused about $50,000 in damage.

Anybody with information about the 2005 fire is asked to call 888-ATF-FIRE.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463; hefley@heraldnet.com.