Arson suspected in City Hall fire

Arson suspected in City Hall fire
Photo courtesy of Tia Melson

MILL CITY, Ore. - Arson investigators are looking into the fire that destroyed City Hall and injured the city's finance clerk.

Firefighters found the building engulfed in flames after a report of an explosion Monday night. | Photo Gallery

The city's finance clerk, Joy Cronin, 46, was injured in the fire and take to Salem Hospital. She was later transferred to the burn center at Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland, according to the Linn County Sheriff.

Sheriff Tim Mueller said his office is investigating the suspcious fire with the help of the Oregon State Police State Fire Marshal's office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Mueller said the cause remains under investigation but that the fire is suspicious.

The fire was reported around 8 p.m.

According to City Councilor Lynda Harrington, all the city records are stored at City Hall, as well as archives.

"It is the heart of the city," she said. "Pretty much a disaster if all the records were destroyed."

Harrington said Cronin happened to be driving by when she noticed a glow inside the building.

When Cronin opened a door, flames exploded on her.