Tacoma police and firefighters are investigating a fire of suspicious origins in the 700 block of South 57th Street that engulfed the front porch of a reportedly troubled property.
Neighbors reported the fire about 5:10 p.m. Saturday when they saw flames licking up the home’s awning. The fire was mostly extinguished by 5:50 p.m., and firefighters entered the home to check for damage indoors.
Police visited the home Friday night because of a dispute between its landlord and tenant, Sgt. David Peck said.
“It’s a little bit suspicious, but it’s too soon to tell,” he said as police interviewed witnesses and firefighters wrapped up their work.
Neighbors spoke to a reporter on condition of anonymity because they suspected arson and feared retribution.
Neighbors said the tenants had abused the home over the winter, leaving garbage, alcohol bottles and drug paraphernalia around the property.
Tacoma Fire Battalion Chief Dave McRoberts said the fire caused about $38,000 worth of damage. Its cause was under investigation late Saturday, he said.
Witnesses reported seeing two people on the porch, McRoberts said. The witnesses reported smelling smoke, and seeing the two people run away.Adam Ashton: 253-597-8646