Look up from the pristine ball fields at the Valley Road Playfield in Pullman, and you'll see a strange sight. A couple strange sights, actually. On opposite sides of the park, there are two burned-out community buildings, surrounded by security fencing and a whole lot of questions. Who set fire to them? How? And why?
Three weeks after the community buildings at the Chief Joseph and Nez Perce apartment complexes were destroyed by fire, investigators don't seem to be any closer to solving this mystery. When the Nez Perce building burned in the early morning hours of May 22nd, fire crews weren't even sure it was arson. Then the Chief Joseph building, which is just a couple hundred yards away, burned down four days later. Investigators know they have an arsonist on their hands, but clues have been hard to come by.
The fires cost several hundred thousand dollars' worth of damage. It's not clear yet when, or if, the buildings will be replaced or simply torn down. Both apartment complexes are owned by Washington State University.