A $2-million blaze that destroyed the historic Glendale Elks Lodge on Sunday was set by arsonists, a Glendale fire investigator said Friday.
Arson investigator John Orr said he found "two distinct points of origin of the fire connected by a trail of flammable liquid" in the main hallway of the 69-year-old building. He said the fire "spread very quickly," causing two upper floors of the three-story building to collapse before firefighters arrived. Officials said they have several leads on possible suspects, none of them lodge members.
The dilapidated building had been the center of a debate between preservationists and the Elks over whether it should be preserved as a landmark. The Elks had planned to tear down the building and sell a portion of the site to raise money to build a smaller clubhouse for their dwindling membership.
A $500 reward has been posted by the WE TIP organization, a private statewide crime hotline, for information leading to an arrest.