A pre-Thanksgiving fire that badly damaged businesses at a Crystal strip mall was originally ruled suspicious, but now authorities have determined the cause to be arson.
The update came this week from the Crystal Police Department: "we believe there are people who may have some information that may be helpful to us in this investigation."
Firefighters were able to quickly get the blaze under control at 5600 56th Ave. N., but small businesses of the mall all sustained significant damage due to the fire burning for a lengthy period before West Metro Fire-Rescue District arrived.
Police are asking anyone who may have seen something suspicious in or around the mall to come forward.
"We would like to bring those responsible for damaging these small businesses to justice and are collecting additional evidence to assist with this," Crystal PD said.
Businesses at the mall include an African clothing and beauty supplies store, a Thai and Lao restaurant, nail salon and barbershop.
The Crystal PD tip line can be reached by calling 763-531-1020.