The Toledo Fire Department responded to the fire and spent several hours battling it but the home still wound up a total loss. Investigators later found evidence to conclude the fire was likely started by an arsonist.
A few days later Toledo Police conducted a narcotics related search warrant at 277 NE 10th Street, the residence of John “Cliff” Brown. During the search of his residence, investigators found evidence that Mr. Brown was responsible for setting the fire.
Tuesday, January 9th, Mr. Brown, who was already in custody at the Lincoln County Jail for narcotics offenses, was charged with Arson in the 1st degree, Arson in the 2nd degree, Burglary I, Criminal Mischief I, Reckless Burning, Recklessly Endangering, and Tampering with Physical Evidence.
The investigation into the arson is ongoing and additional arrests and/or charges are expected. The Toledo Police Department was assisted in this investigation by the Oregon State Police-Arson Investigation Unit, Oregon State Police-Newport, Newport Police Department, Newport Fire Department, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, Toledo Fire Department and the Oregon State Fire Marshal’s Office.
Anyone having information related to the arson are encouraged to report it to Toledo Police Detective Pitcher at 541-336-5555.