On September 3, 2021, at approximately 10:54 a.m., the Stearns County Communications Center received a call reporting a house on fire at the address of 33202 County Road 30 in Grove Township. The reporting party stated that they were able to smell smoke and upon exiting the house could see smoke coming from the roof vents.
Upon arrival deputies observed smoke coming from the vents but no open flames. Melrose Fire and Freeport Fire arrived on scene and were able to contain the fire to the attic area of the home. The home’s upstairs bathroom sustained major damage. The homeowner, Christopher John Ritter, 42, was not home at the time of the fire and no one was injured in the fire.