Fire at Century-Old Ohio Hotel Ruled Arson

January 20, 2012

Investigators say a fire that destroyed an old, vacant hotel in northwestern Ohio was the result of arson.

The blaze happened Sunday afternoon in Paulding, about 65 miles southwest of Toledo. No injuries were reported.

The state fire marshal’s office said Tuesday that a white male wearing a gray sweatshirt and dark pants was seen running from the Barnes Hotel at the time of the fire there. A reward of up to $5,000 is being offered for information leading to whoever set the blaze.

The Crescent-News in nearby Defiance reports the hotel was more than a century old and had been vacant for several years.

The fire marshal’s office says the property had been cited for safety concerns. A Thursday hearing on that matter is being rescheduled.

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