An Olmsted deputy keeps on lookers (and photographer) at a distance as old house burns on September 5. Photo by Carleane Capelle
By Tara Lindquist
Two Byron teenagers have allegedly claimed responsibility for starting an abandoned house on fire last week in Byron.
The initial investigation determined that the origin of the fire was suspicious in nature.
The Olmsted County Sheriff's Office and Byron Fire Department were dispatched to 1445 7th St. NE on Sept. 5 at 6:25 p.m. for a structure fire. When they arrived, law enforcement and the fire department found the house completely engulfed in flames with a plume of smoke that could be seen from quite a distance.
During interviews with the two suspects, a 13-year-old male and 14-year-old male both from Byron, allegedly admitted that they set fire to a couch cushion inside the abandoned home to "see what would happen."
Captain Behrns said the sheriff's office will meet with the Olmsted County Attorney's Office to discuss any potential criminal charges.
According to Captain Scott Behrns with the Olmsted County Sheriff's Office the structure in question had been vacant and in a state of great disrepair since the late 1990's. The structure was deemed a complete loss.
"Due to the state of the structure, there is no financial loss to the property," Behrns said. "The property owners confirmed that no one was living in the structure and that there was no need for the structure to be insured since it was uninhabitable."