Home » NEWS » Investigator wants probe of Beverly fire

Investigator wants probe of Beverly fire

HATTIESBURG — Hattiesburg fire investigator Scott McRaney says he’s asked state and federal investigators to look into the blaze that destroyed the historic Beverly Drive-In on Oct. 30.

He said he called the state fire marshal and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives because of its value in money and history.

The 62-year-old theater — the second drive-in to open in Mississippi — was on the Mississippi Heritage Trust’s 2008 list of 10 Most Endangered Historic Places in Mississippi.

It was for sale before the fire, with a $1 million price tag.

Electricity, gas and lightning all have been ruled out — the site had neither power nor natural gas, McRaney said.

Someone had to have started the fire, either accidentally or on purpose, co-owner Suzette Hargroder said.

She said vagrants and other trespassers were a constant at the property, which included a three-bedroom house below the screen.

“There was never a time I went by there when someone had not been in the house,” she said.

Hargroder also said she filed a police report after finding matches and cigarette butts in the house after the theater closed in 2005 because of damage from Hurricane Katrina.


… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About Megan Wright

Leave a Reply