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WAREHOUSE FIRE: Tip Leads Police To Suspects

Posted on: 5:46 pm, September 5, 2013, by , updated on: 06:08pm, September 5, 2013

It has been a week since firefighters responded to a massive fire at the old Taylor Recycling plant on Scott Avenue.

Authorities believe they have caught the three responsible for it, Thursday.

Workers hoped to install 1,400 feet of fence by the end of the evening which is supposed to keep trespassers out. But Janice Groves wishes the fence could keep the smell in. Groves says, “But every time they move something the smell comes you can smell smoke.”

She says it`s hard to believe juveniles could have done something so destructive. Groves says, “It could have came over here. It could have started other places on fire.”

Officials say without witnesses, solving arson cases like this is almost impossible. Des Moines Police Department’s Sergeant Jason Halifax says, “That was the key piece from solving the case was that anonymous tip.”

1_mug_duff_kristopherThat tip brought them to 20-year-old Kristopher Duff, who admitted to setting the fire with two others. Halifax says, “They started some i think carpet and cardboard and then they threw it in a pile of big debris which basically then took off from there.”

Groves says before the two fires this abandoned building was a nuisance. After years of complaining to the city about the warehouse, she says it`s hard to say what will ever take care of this mess. But she is sure of one thing. Groves says, “There`s smell every time they move dirt over there there is smell comes off of there.”

The only way to get rid of the smell is to get rid of the rubble.

According to the police report, the tip callers overheard one of the young men talking about the fire and reported it.

Kristopher Duff faces charges of second degree arson.

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