Atlanta Fire Department says arsonist started blaze that gutted Krispy Kreme

This photo from Atlanta Fire Rescue shows the gutted interior of the Krispy Kreme on Ponce.
Surveillance image of the arson suspect.

The Atlanta Fire and Rescue Department announced Friday, Feb. 26, that the fire that gutted the iconic Krispy Kreme Doughnut Shop on Ponce de Leon Avenue in Midtown was arson.

The department released surveillance photos of a man dressed in black behind the Krispy Kreme just before the fire began.

“The investigators believe the fire was intentionally set on the exterior of the building,” AFRD spokesman Sgt. Cortez Stafford said in a press release. “The fire spread quickly to the interior of the structure causing catastrophic damage.”

Cortez said investigators have not determined a motive nor have they identified the suspect.

The incident occurred just Just before 1 a.m on Feb. 10. Two employees who were working the drive-thru made it out safely.

The Krispy Kreme has been serving up doughnuts at the location for nearly 60 years. Former basketball star Shaquille O’Neal made headlines when he bought the franchise location in 2016. O’Neal posted on his Instagram account this morning that he would rebuild and the location would return “stronger than ever.”

There’s a $10,000 reward for info on the arson suspect. Call 1-800-282-5804.

Check back for updates in this developing story.