Chadron Fire

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Two individuals have been arrested in connection with a Tuesday morning fire that damaged the Hardee's restaurant in Chadron.

Dawes County Attorney Vance Haug said 28-year-old Michael "Pepper" McFarland was arrested on suspicion of burglary, theft and arson. Court documents said 27-year-old Del Neidert was arrested on suspicion of being an accessory.

Court affidavits show that authorities believe the fire was set to mask a burglary and theft at the restaurant.

No formal charges have been filed, but Judge Charles Plantz will be in Chadron today (Thursday), and county officials hope the two can be arraigned.

The fire was reported at 2:09 a.m. Tuesday. Fire crews were on the scene until about 6 a.m.

The Nebraska State Patrol is investigating the case.