Authorities are offering a reward for information on those responsible for a 2016 arson incident that destroyed the city hall building then under construction in the east-metro suburb of Lakeland.
The fire came just days after then-Mayor Amy Williams, who supported the new building, was defeated by Richard Glasgow, who opposed it. Construction of the building was at the center of their contentious mayoral race.
A preliminary investigation found that the fire was intentionally set, though tips on who may have started it eventually dried up and the investigation went dormant.
“Someone out there knows something,” State Fire Marshal Bruce West said. “Even the tiniest bit of information could help break this case wide open and give the community the answers it deserves.”
The announcement comes in the middle of another controversy in Lakeland, where the City Council is at odds over how to fill a vacant seat.
The Minnesota Department of Public Safety chose to highlight the Lakeland case because the theme of this year’s Arson Awareness Week is “Preventing Arson at Construction Sites,” said Jen Longaecker, a department spokeswoman.
Anyone with information about the fire is encouraged to call the Minnesota Arson Hotline at 800-723-2020 or go online at mniaai.org.
A reward of up to $5,000 is available through the Minnesota Chapter of the International Association of Arson Investigators.