Police believe an arsonist is to blame for a blaze that consumed a Lincolnton residence early Sunday morning while residents were out of town.
Police issued a statement Tuesday afternoon, calling the incident suspicious in nature, particularly after area residents told officers they spotted a person at the property — 504 Huss Street — moments before the fire.
Several items were also discovered missing from the home, police said.
Upon arriving at the property around 3:30 a.m., fire crews with Lincolnton and Boger City Fire Departments battled heavy smoke and flames, which were mostly flying through the single-story home’s roof and a back bedroom, Lincolnton Fire Chief Mitch Burgin said.
The home’s four residents, a couple and two children, ages 5 and 7, were out of town at the time of the blaze, Burgin added.
Firefighters were on scene for six hours extinguishing flames and cleaning up the property.
While fire officials said the fire was contained to only one bedroom, the entire residence suffered smoke and heat damage and will need to be “totally reconditioned” before the family can return.
Detective Dennis Harris is continuing to investigate the incident.
Anyone with information on the fire or burglary can speak to him at the Lincolnton Police Department by calling (704) 736-8900 or contact Crime Stoppers at (704) 736-8909.
Tips may remain anonymous, and any tips leading to an arrest may result in a reward of up to $1,000.