ATF National Response Team investigating fire in downtown Grand Rapids
The National Response Team (NRT) of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is now assisting in the investigation of a fire that burned down two businesses in Grand Rapids on Saturday.
According to a news release, the NRT arrived on scene Tuesday to join local and state investigators in determining the origin and cause of the fire that destroyed the Lakeview Behavioral Health clinic and the Veterans of Foreign Wars post next door. Both were declared total losses.
The Grand Rapids Fire Department and the Minnesota State Fire Marshal's Division requested the ATF's NRT to provide additional resources to aid in the investigation. More than 20 NRT members have been activated for the investigation, according to the release.
“The extra personnel will help move this investigation along more quickly,” said ATF Special Agent in Charge William Terry Henderson. “Our goal here is to assist in a full investigation of this fire scene alongside our state and local partners, bringing it to a successful conclusion.”
The NRT had not been in Minnesota since 2004 until last month when it was called to investigate the fire that destroyed Press Bar and Parlor in St. Cloud. Investigators determined that fire had been set intentionally, and the bar's owner was later charged with first-degree arson.