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‘Political nature’ of Planned Parenthood leads ATF to join Knoxville fire investigation

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives brokers are helping the Knoxville Fire Department’s investigation into Friday’s fire that destroyed a Planned Parenthood Center, however officers say there is no such thing as a proof presently that signifies the fire was deliberately set.

“It’s because it is Planned Parenthood, because of the political nature of Planned Parenthood,” stated KFD Assistant Fire Chief Mark Wilbanks. “They’ve are available to help within the investigation. Right now there’s no indication it was a suspicious fire, however probably if it have been, ATF would take over however proper now they’re right here to help.

“All the alphabet agencies, if you will, will likely be involved to assist just because of what this building is and what it represents to the community.”

The constructing is a complete loss. Knoxville Fire Department stated they obtained a name at 6:39 a.m. a couple of constructing fire and when crews arrived on scene at North Cherry Street, the business constructing was “fully involved with fire through the roof.”

No injures have been reported from the incident, stated KFD spokesperson Assistant Chief Brent Seymour.

Ashley Coffield, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi, launched this assertion on the fire:

“A fire occurred at Planned Parenthood’s Knoxville health center at 710 N. Cherry Street early Friday morning. Out top priority is the health and safety of our patients and staff and we can confirm that no one was hurt. The health center has been temporarily closed since December 7, 2021 for renovation. This is a huge loss for the community and we hope that there are no resulting injuries or damage to neighboring properties. We are fully cooperating with the authorities as they assess the cause of the fire.”

Coffield stated the middle has been closed for renovation since Dec. 7. A word was posted on the Parenthood Knoxville Health Center web site to inform sufferers of the momentary closure.

“We are temporarily closed for renovation to enhance and expand our patient services. This closure is unfortunate but necessary to maintain our strict standards of safety, privacy, and care for our patients. We deeply apologize for any inconvenience. Please call us at 866-711-1717 to see if we can help you with telehealth or a prescription refill during this time. We look forward to celebrating with you at our grand re-opening in Spring 2022!”

In January 2021, police investigated after an unknown particular person fired a shotgun on the doorways of this Planned Parenthood location, which occurred on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. The Federal Bureau of Investigation later joined that investigation. That investigation continues to be ongoing.

Wilbanks stated a complete of 9 KFD models with 30 fire personnel responded to the scene and labored to get the fire underneath management. An investigation into the trigger is underway.


Editor’s Note: This story has been up to date as further info turned out there.