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Roy Moore accuser's house burns, arson investigation launched

Alabama police have spoken to a person of interest.
Roy Moore (Getty Images)

The house belonging to a woman who accused former Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexual misconduct was destroyed in a fire on Tuesday, and local authorities have launched an arson investigation.

Tina Johnson accused Moore of grabbing her in his office in the early '90s. She said her family's house in Gadsden, Alabama, was destroyed by fire on Tuesday morning. There were no injuries: Johnson and her husband was at work, and her grandson was in school.

"I am devastated, just devastated," Johnson told AL.com on Friday. "We have just the clothes on our backs."

The fire is being investigated by the Etowah County Arson Task Force, said Natalie Barton, public information officer with 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," she said.

Johnson and a neighbor said a man with a history of public intoxication was seen walking around the house before and during the fire, AL.com reported. A female neighbor said the man came up to her that morning and asked her if she thought Johnson's house was going to burn, a question she didn't understand because no flames were visible.

"He's been trouble in the neighborhood for a while," said Kevin Tallant, who lives across the street from Johnson, about the man.

Last month, Roy Moore lost Alabama's special election for a U.S. Senate seat amid a flurry of accusations that he had sexually harassed women and molested underage girls. Highly conservative, he was previously removed from judicial positions in the state twice: once for refusing to remove a sculpture of the Ten Commandments from the state courthouse; again for refusing to allow same-sex marriages after they were legalized by the Supreme Court. 

After the Washington Post published a story in early November about Moore's alleged sexual misconduct, Johnson came forward to claim that Moore groped her during a meeting over a custody dispute in 1991, when she was 28.