The fire that destroyed a Rogers car dealership early Wednesday morning has been ruled an arson by local fire investigators, according to the Rogers Fire Department.
Crews responded shortly before 3 a.m. to 2004 S. Eighth St., where a fire had consumed a building. Firefighters battled the fire, but the building was destroyed, according to the fire department.
The location is listed as Mickey Beagle Autos.
No one was hurt in the fire, although several vehicles and pieces of high-end mechanical equipment were destroyed. The damage is estimated to be more than $100,000.
“It was very windy overnight, so that drove the fire and helped it grow more quickly than normal,” said Deputy Chief Bryan Hinds with the Rogers Fire Department. “What our investigators did is help the Rogers Police Department collect evidence, which is being sent to the Arkansas State Crime Lab for processing.”
David Batres works next door to Mickey Beagle.
“I turned on my car and came right to the building because I did not know about my building,” Batres said. “The police called me, they got the number from my window and they called me about 2:45 in the morning. And the first time, I didn’t answer my phone because i was sleeping, but at 4:45, they called again and said the building near you is on fire.”
Batres also told 5NEWS that he noticed something he said seemed suspicious Wednesday morning.
“We saw a truck down the road with a lot of stuff, and the owner of Mickey Beagle said his Mercedes wheels were in the back,” said Batres. “The guy took off when we approached him, but left his picture ID on the truck’s seat.”
Rogers police do not have anyone in custody.
If you have any information about this incident, call the Northwest Arkansas Crimestoppers at 790-TIPS.