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Suspect arrested in New Year’s Eve arson attack on Seattle gay nightclub

Police took Musab Masmari in custody while he was on route to airport
Surveillance video photo of suspect Musab Masmari, accused of starting a fire at the gay club Neighbours
Seattle Police Department

A suspect has been arrested for the New Year's Even arson attack of Neighbours nightclub, one of Seattle's most popular gay bars.

Musab Masmari was on his way to the airport when police took him into custody.

According to King, the suspect was interviewed by detectives then booked for investigation of arson. The bar released a surveillance video that police claim shows the suspect entering the club.

On New Year's Eve, the bar's staff discovered a carpeted stairwell had been doused with gasoline and set ablaze. More than 750 people were forced to flee into a nearby alley.

No one was hurt; the fire was put out with a combination of fire extinguishers and overhead sprinklers.

As reported by King 5, the bar later found a container of gasoline at the top of a staircase.

As of now, law authorities have not offered a motive.

The fire capped off a year in which Seattle elected its first openly gay mayor, and came 12 months after same-sex couples began marrying in Washington State.

'I feel that the streets are a little bit safer tonight,' said Neighbours Spokesman Shaun Knittel to King 5. 'Why do 750 people have to potentially pay for your ideals, your beliefs, your anger?'

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