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Fire destroys house with moonshine still in basement

VIDEO: Fire destroys house with moonshine still in basement

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}Sullivan County Sheriff's deputies are investigating a house fire in Blountville, after renters set up a moonshine still in the basement without the owner's knowledge.BLOUNTVILLE, Tenn. -

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}Homeowner Vernon Rollers said the renters never told him the house was on fire. He drove by his rental home Thursday morning, only to see it had burned down.

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}"I didn't find out ‘til yesterday morning,” Rollers said. “I was going to get a haircut and happened to look over here and see the house had been burnt."

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}As he looked through the ashes, he found something that surprised him.

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}"Well I could see in the floor in there it looked like a still,” Roller said. “Then I got a hold of the sheriff's department and finally got them over here yesterday and then told them I wanted an investigation on it, so that's when they dug it out."

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}Roller said the fire damage was especially bad around where it had been set up. According to the police report, a renter told deputies the still was meant as a decoration.

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}"He stated that he went downstairs to the basement to check the breaker - that it had gone off - that he went to check the breaker,” Public Information Officer Kristen Quon said. “When he went back up he started to smell smoke, and that's when the house caught fire."

{p style="margin-bottom:.0001pt; margin:0in 0in 8pt"}Roller said his wife went to the house every month, and they never suspected there was a still inside. He believes the house will be a total loss.

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