Apparent arson under investigation in Libby car fire

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  • A car “suspiciously” caught fire early Tuesday morning in the Three Corner Mobile Home Park trailer court in Libby. (Suzanne Resch/The Western News)

  • 1

    Michelle McMullen, owner of the car which caught fire, said it looks like someone doused it with oil. (Luke Hollister/The Western News)

  • 2

    The fire melted some of the rubber on the tire and burned the car's paint. Car owner Michelle McMullen said she can still smell smoke from the inside of the car.

  • A car “suspiciously” caught fire early Tuesday morning in the Three Corner Mobile Home Park trailer court in Libby. (Suzanne Resch/The Western News)

  • 1

    Michelle McMullen, owner of the car which caught fire, said it looks like someone doused it with oil. (Luke Hollister/The Western News)

  • 2

    The fire melted some of the rubber on the tire and burned the car's paint. Car owner Michelle McMullen said she can still smell smoke from the inside of the car.

A car “suspiciously” caught fire early Tuesday morning between 5 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. in the Three Corner Mobile Home Park trailer court in Libby, according to officials on the scene.

Lincoln County Sheriff’s Deputy Kirk Kraft, investigator, said the owner of the vehicle was watching TV when they noticed flames showing on their home security monitor. The owner proceeded to call 911.

After observing the fire, Kraft concluded the incident to be “apparent person caused.” However, he could not determine how the fire started.

“We eliminated any mechanical or electrical causes,” he said. There were no wires or other sources of ignition.

Kraft is still investigating.

Assistant Chief/Fire Marshall Steve Lauer said the owner of the vehicle stopped the fire themselves.

It was mostly out by the time crews arrived, he said. Lauer requested law enforcement after noticing the fire appeared to be suspicious.

The fire caused smoke and heat damage as well as paint to burn, he said.

Heat damage melted the car’s inner fender well, probably costing $1,000 to $2,000 worth in repairs, he said.

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