Authorities Seek Suspect in Arson at 'Pizzagate' Eatery - NBC Chicago
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Authorities Seek Suspect in Arson at 'Pizzagate' Eatery

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    Authorities Seek Suspect in Arson at 'Pizzagate' Eatery
    Jose Luis Magana/AP (File)
    FILE - This photo shows the entrance to Comet Ping Pong pizza shop, in Washington, which became the center of an outlandish online conspiracy theory, Dec. 5, 2016.

    A D.C. restaurant that was once at the center of an online conspiracy theory dubbed "pizzagate" was intentionally set on fire, fire officials say.

    Firefighters responded to a small fire at Comet Ping Pong on Connecticut Avenue NW about 9:20 p.m. Wednesday night, D.C. Fire and EMS said.

    They found that employees had put out the fire that spread to some curtains and window coverings inside the restaurant, the fire department said.

    No one was injured in the fire.

    Fire investigators determined the fire was arson and later released these photos of a suspect:

    Photo credit: Washington D.C. Arson Explosives Task Force

    Authorities described the suspect as a white man, 25 to 30 years old with blonde hair, a mustache and a beard. He was wearing a blue and white varsity style jacket and blue jeans at the time of the fire.

    Investigators are asking anyone who can identify the suspect to call 202-904-6511 or email james.taylor7@dc.gov.

    It's not clear if the fire is related to the fake news "pizzagate" theory.

    In December 2016, a North Carolina man armed with an assault rifle traveled to D.C. and fired his weapon inside the restaurant.

    Edgar Welch told police he was there to investigate the "pizzagate" theory that claimed Comet Ping Pong was the home base of a child sex abuse ring run by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her presidential campaign chair, John Podesta.

    Welch was sentenced to four years in prison.

    The pizzeria saw an outpouring of support from the community after the ordeal. Hundreds of signs of support were posted outside Comet Ping Pong in the days after the shooting.