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Arson suspected in Moorhead fire

MOORHEAD, Minn. – Moorhead Fire Chief Rich Duysen said Monday officials suspect arson may have played a role in a fire that heavily damaged a long-closed nightclub in downtown Moorhead.

Duysen said firefighters found an unsecured door when they arrived about 2:45 a.m. Monday at the former Coach’s Sport Pub, 617 Center Ave., after a police officer on patrol reported smoke coming from the building. Duysen said it is believed to have started in what was the kitchen.

Duysen said the building’s sprinkler system had been turned off. He said the Moorhead Fire Department was aware of the sprinkler situation. Firefighters reactivated the system and used it to help control the blaze.

Coach’s closed in 2005 after the city decided not to renew its liquor license. Before the bar closed, it was a busy place for police calls, including fights, said police Lt. Tory Jacobson.

Coach’s was also in the news in March 2004 when Jason Reinhardt died at a Moorhead fraternity house after consuming at least 15 drinks at the bar to celebrate his 21st birthday.

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