May 21, 2018
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Dresden fire ruled arson

By Beth Brogan, BDN Staff

DRESDEN, Maine — A fire at a Dresden home earlier this week has been ruled arson, according to the Maine state fire marshal’s office.

Sgt. Ken Grimes of the fire marshal’s office declined to say why that determination was made, but said no charges have been filed.

The basement fire at 729 Middle Road was reported at about 10:45 a.m. Tuesday, Dresden Fire Chief Gerald Lilly said Thursday. No one was home at the time, according to Grimes, who added that he is not sure how many people lived there.

The home, which was insured, was sold within the last year to Robert Armstrong, according to Trudy Foss, the town’s administrative assistant.

The fire was knocked down within minutes, Lilly said — in part because a water line doused some of the flames.

“What had happened was it had burned one of the water lines off, so that kept it down, and we extinguished it,” Lilly said. “It acted kind of like a sprinkler.”

Although the fire was out quickly, Lilly said he was on scene until about 6:30 p.m. because investigators were still at the home.

The fire marshal’s office could be called to investigate a fire for a number of reasons, but Grimes said that in this case, investigators went because smaller communities such as Dresden don’t have the time or expertise to investigate the origin of cause of a fire.

Such investigations, he said, “are very labor- and time-consuming … until the investigation is complete and classified, you never know what you have.”

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