Downtown dental clinic fire sparked by burning blanket

Note: This story has been updated.

An arrest has been made in the fire this morning that destroyed Columbus Family Dental Center on Third Street.

According to the Columbus Police Department, the investigation into the fire revealed that it started after a blanket was lit on fire by 31-year-old Joshua J. Whitmore of Columbus. Whitmore was arrested on a preliminary felony charge of criminal mischief.

Capt. Mike Wilson with the Columbus Fire Department explains that the cause of the fire is being listed as accidental.

Wilson said there is a serious danger in using open fires in unsafe ways for heating or cooking.

He also cautioned that the current dry conditions have not been offset by recent rains, making for the danger of wind-blown wildfires.

According to the fire department, police and firefighters were called to the business in the 900 block of Third Street at about 3:48 a.m. this morning. They arrived to find fire coming through the roof. Aerial trucks from Columbus Fire Department and Columbus Township poured water from above for about an hour before the fire was declared under control.

Dr. Laura Bracken told investigators that the business has been at the location for about 20 years. Representatives of the clinic say that they will be looking for a temporary location to begin seeing patients as soon as possible.

The investigation is still ongoing.