Arson investigators have been deployed after Roy Moore accuser Tina Johnson’s home burned down on Wednesday, an incident that has caused some opponents of the failed Alabama Senate candidate to suggest that politics could have something to do with the blaze.
“I am devastated, just devastated,” Johnson told AL.com. “We just have the clothes on our backs.”
The fire at Johnson’s home was first reported by neighbors and utility workers at around 8:00 am on Tuesday; by the time firefighters had managed to put out the blaze, all her family’s possessions had been eradicated. Nobody was hurt, however, as Johnson and her husband were at work and her grandson was at school.
While officials seem to suspect that there was foul play involved in the blaze, they have been quick to temper conspiratorial thinking that would try to link Moore to the incident.
“That fire is still under investigation by the Etowah County Arson Task Force, said Natalie Barton, a spokeswoman for the Etowah County Sheriff’s Department. “A suspect of interest is being spoken to. But there have been no charges, to my knowledge, related to the fire at this time.”
“The ongoing investigation does not lead us to believe that the fire is in any way related to Roy Moore or allegations made against him. More details will be released when warrants are obtained,” Barton clarified in a later statement.
Neighbors reportedly saw a young man with a history of public intoxication near Johnson’s house before and during the blaze, but it is not clear whether he is the suspect of interest.
Johnson entered the national spotlight as one of the numerous women who came forward to accuse Moore, the anti-establishment Republican candidate in Alabama’s recent special election, of grabbing her buttocks in his office in the early 1990s.