Fire marshal: Sioux Falls co-op fire likely arson - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Fire marshal: Sioux Falls co-op fire likely arson

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A burglary that resulted in arson is suspected as the cause of yesterday's fire that damaged the Co-op Natural Foods store in central Sioux Falls.

The fire was first reported around 3 a.m. Sunday morning, and fire crews had it under control in about five minutes. But Sioux Falls Fire Marshal Dean Lanier said multiple points of origin point toward arson.

Extensive smoke damage destroyed more than $100,000 in inventory, Alex Halbach, president of the Co-op's board, said.

A small amount of cash was taken in what Halbach said was a burglary attempt.

The Co-op has around 2,500 members, but anyone can shop at the store. It recently celebrated 40 years in Sioux Falls.

"They just burned the building," general manager Molly Langley said. "The co-op business model is an idea of proven value, and you can't destroy that. This is a community-based business that serves everyone and benefits everyone. We'll be back bigger and better than ever."

Langley said they will open a special account at the Sioux Falls Federal Credit Union for people who want to contribute to help pay Co-op employees while the store remains closed.

Stay with KSFY News and for updates on this story.

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