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A Merced movie theater caught on fire and the cause could be suspicious

Merced Fire Department responds to fire at United Artists Regency 7 movie theater

The Merced Fire department responded to what it described as a suspicious fire in the wall at the United Artists Regency 7 movie theater in Merced, Calif., on Friday, Nov. 9, 2019.
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The Merced Fire department responded to what it described as a suspicious fire in the wall at the United Artists Regency 7 movie theater in Merced, Calif., on Friday, Nov. 9, 2019.

A Merced movie theater partially caught on fire Friday night.

The Merced Fire Department responded around 7:40 p.m. to a call of a structure fire at the United Artists Regency 7 movie theater, located at 635 Fairfield Drive, according to Merced Fire Captain Nathan Frankhauser.

Officials say movie theater staff reported seeing smoke inside the theater.

Initially, firefighters found nothing showing, but upon further investigation they did find smoke inside a theater, Frankhauser said.

Fire officials determined the fire was in an exterior wall and the fire ran up the wall into the roof.

Fire crews were able to extinguish the fire which officials described as a smoldering fire.

According to Frankhauser, cause of the fire is suspicious but under investigation. On Saturday, Merced city Battalion Chief Cory Haas said the damages are estimated at $30,000.

No injuries were reported to moviegoers or firefighters.

The theater re-opened on Saturday.

Management wouldn’t comment on the fire, directing all questions to their corporate office in Tennessee.

Shawn Jansen contributed to this report.
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