Windsor Dollarama blaze arson: Fire Marshal

Windsor Dollarama blaze arson: Fire Marshal - WINDSOR, Ont. -- The Ontario Fire Marshal’s office has finished its report on the Dollarama fire and investigator Mike Owens has confirmed that the fire was "intentionally set."

A blaze ripped through the Dollarama Plaza in East Windsor on April 9, 2012.“This determination has been made as a result of the observations of credible eye witnesses who observed the fire in its early stage of fire growth and who were able to provide investigators with a well defined area of fire origin,” Owens said in the statement.

“Examination further concluded that … all potential accidental causes for the fire were credibly eliminated.”

The fire broke out around 8: 15 p.m. on April 9. A customer of Dollarama, in the East Park Centre strip mall at 6711 Tecumseh Rd. E., spotted smoke. Firefighters arrived in minutes, but that was still too late to save the building.

Accelerated by heavy winds outside and flammable products inside, the blaze quickly consumed the building, reducing it to a sagging burnt-out shell.

Smoke and water caused extensive damage to several other businesses. Value Village, Ming Wah, Pita Pit and Bencak Family Dental Centre all had to be shut down.

The Windsor police arson unit is continuing to investigate the fire and numerous leads and tips are currently being pursued.

Police said that not all of the customers inside of the Dollarama at the time of the fire have been identified or have come forward.

People who were shopping at nearby businesses may have witnessed something as well but may not be aware of its significance.

Anyone with information about this arson is asked to call the Windsor police arson unit at 519-255-6700 ext. 4330 or anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 519-258-8477.

By Trevor Wilhelm, The Windsor Star June 21, 2012