Fire at historic Alberta church now treated as arson, reversing earlier conclusion
142-year-old McDougall Stoney Mission Church near Morley destroyed by fire last month
After first concluding the fire that destroyed a historic church west of Cochrane was likely an accident, Alberta RCMP said Friday investigators have reopened the file as a possible case of arson.
The McDougall Stoney Mission Church, built in 1875 just east of Morley, burned to the ground on May 22.
The day after the fire, Cochrane RCMP said there was no evidence to suggest the fire was intentionally set and that the investigation had concluded.
On Friday, RCMP said in a release that further investigation by the Municipal District of Bighorn fire investigator turned up new information suggesting the blaze was, in fact, deliberately set.
Insp. Lauren Weare said several officers have been assigned to the case.
"The McDougall Church was a significant historical heritage site and its loss has saddened both local and non-locals alike," she said.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Cochrane RCMP detachment at 403-851-8000 or contact Crime Stoppers.
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