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TMCNet:  Fire at cab site near airport was intentional: Investigators say early morning blaze caused $750,000 in damage to Yellow Cab Company. [The Charlotte Observer, N.C.]

[July 27, 2009]

Fire at cab site near airport was intentional: Investigators say early morning blaze caused $750,000 in damage to Yellow Cab Company. [The Charlotte Observer, N.C.]

(Charlotte Observer (NC) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Jul. 27--Fire investigators say an early Sunday blaze that gutted a Yellow Cab Company of Charlotte building near the airport was intentionally set and caused about $750,000 in damage.

The beige structure on Golf Acres Drive just off of Morris Field Drive was still standing later Sunday. But part of its metal skin was warped and there were black scorch marks along the roof line from intense heat and flames.

The cab company's operations were unaffected, said co-owner William Bodenhamer. Dispatch calls are handled by his Utah-based operation using Blackberry and GPS technology. The technology automatically matches up taxi calls with the cab that is the closest.


Bodenhamer, who was interviewed by investigators, said he didn't know the cause of the blaze. As of Sunday evening, he still hadn't heard that investigators believed it was intentionally set, he said. He said the building was insured.

Bodenhamer said he bought the company four years ago and that it's independently owned. His partner is Mitch Rouse, listed in tax records as living in Jacksonville, N.C.

According to the tax records, the 9,000-square-foot building sits on more than two 2.4 acres of gated land. A fleet of yellow taxi cabs was parked on the property Sunday afternoon. The cars didn't appear to be have been damaged in the fire.

It took 48 firefighters more than an hour to get it under control.

Investigators ask anyone with information about the fire to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could result in a reward.

To see more of The Charlotte Observer, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.charlotteobserver.com.

Copyright (c) 2009, The Charlotte Observer, N.C.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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