Suspected arson fire destroys $30K-$35K worth of timber at southwest Michigan game area

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is seeking information about a suspected arson fire at the Allegan State Game Area.

A helicopter flying over the area just after 5 a.m. Sunday saw the fire and reported it to the DNR. Officials believe the fire was started between 10 p.m. Saturday and 2 a.m. Sunday.

Two decks of cut timber owned worth about $30,000-$35,000 were burned.

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While arson fires like the one at the game area are rare, DNR officers said, this one appears to have been intentional.

"Although the investigation is ongoing, initial evidence suggests arson," said Sgt. Charles Towns, with the DNR Law Enforcement Division. "This wasn’t a spur-of-the-moment thing."

 The company that had purchased the timber, Billsby Lumber Co., is offering a $5,000 reward for information.

Tips can be reported anonymously to the DNR’s Report All Poaching hotline at 800-292-7800.