ROLLA, Mo. -- A man from Rolla is charged with hiring someone to burn down a rental home that he owned. State fire investigators say Christopher Blair, 39, received an insurance payment for $64,400 on the loss a couple of weeks after the fire.
According to the probable cause statement used as the basis of the charge, the fire at 1510 Spencer Street in Rolla was reported about 1:40 a.m. on March 27. Firefighters had to force their way into the home through locked doors to put it out.
An investigator said burn patterns “on the kitchen floor leading into the living room and up the steps that were consistent with the burning of an ignitable liquid. . . . There was no accidental cause that would cause the burn pattern found at the scene. Based on the fact that these burn patterns are of a poured ignitable liquid, which would have been dependent upon the introduction of an outside heat source, this fire is determined to be incendiary in nature.”