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Police: Potsdam fire appears to be arson; suspect identified, interviewed


POTSDAM - A fire that destroyed the multiunit rental property that was home to several SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Canton students early Friday morning appears to have been intentionally set.

Village police, in a news release issued Friday morning, said the fire at 28 Pierrepont Ave.appeared to have been purposely set in a first floor bedroom.

“The person responsible for starting the fire was subsequently identified and interviewed by police. The investigation is ongoing at this time by both the Potsdam Police and St. Lawrence County Fire Investigator,” the police department release said.

Police, fire departments and Potsdam Rescue were dispatched to the working structure fire at 1:39 a.m. Friday, and police said it was quickly determined the fire was suspicious in nature,

The off-campus home housing the SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Canton students was destroyed. Police said all occupants in the house escaped without injury.

SUNY Potsdam spokeswoman Alexandra Jacobs said in an emailed campus alert this morning that the Potsdam Volunteer Fire Department responded to the call at approximately 2 a.m. Friday at 28 Pierrepont Ave. Students living in the rental property were not injured.

“SUNY Potsdam is working on providing housing and support for the student residents,” Ms. Jacobs said in the release.

Potsdam PD have received assistance in the investigation from SUNY Potsdam PD, SUNY Canton PD, and New York State Police.

Potsdam Fire were assisted on scene by West Potsdam Fire, West Stockholm Fire, Parishville Fire, and Hannawa Falls Fire Department.

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