Fire engulfs South Knoxville warehouse, man arrested

Fire engulfs South Knoxville warehouse, man arrested

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A South Knoxville warehouse erupts in fire Thursday night. A South Knoxville warehouse erupts in fire Thursday night.
The fire was under control by 11:00 p.m. Thursday, but crews say they will be dealing with hot spots until the early morning. The fire was under control by 11:00 p.m. Thursday, but crews say they will be dealing with hot spots until the early morning.
Curtis B. Dunbar (source: Knox County Sheriff's Office) Curtis B. Dunbar (source: Knox County Sheriff's Office)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Police have arrested a man accused of setting a South Knoxville warehouse on fire Thursday evening.

The building is a vacant warehouse located at 2110 Chapman Highway,  next to Kern's Bakery. It has been empty for five or six months.

According to Capt. DJ Corcoran, a passerby saw the flames and called 911 around 9:30 p.m. The fire was under control by 11:15 p.m., but crews expect they will still be battling the flames until early Friday morning. Corcoran says the building is a total loss.

A homeless man, Curtis B. Dunbar, 62, is suspected of starting the fire. He is being held in the Knox County Jail on charges of public intoxication and arson.

Knoxville police say Dunbar was seen leaving the building and going across the street to a liquor store. He allegedly told store customers he had set the building on fire.

Police say Dunbar told them he lit papers and a rug to burn the building because it was "a Confederate building."

No injuries were reported.

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