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Investigation of Sharkee’s Bar fire reveals forcible entry

LUVERNE — The investigation into a fire at Sharkee’s Sports Bar & Grill building, 705 S. Kniss Ave., has revealed that forcible entry was made into the building, and that the fire was intentionally set.

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“We concluded that the fire was intentional due to the forcible entry,” said Rock County Sheriff Evan Verbrugge. “The door was open, and there was other evidence to suggest forcible entry.”

In the early morning hours of May 27, a deputy with the Rock County Sheriff’s Office noticed smoke coming from the north side of the Sharkee’s Sports Bar & Grill building. The Luverne and Beaver Creek fire departments were called to assist with putting out the fire and smoke.

Sharkee’s had been closed since Easter weekend after the sewer backed up in the building’s lower level. Owner Dave Halverson had initially planned to close the business temporarily at the start of the year in order to demolish and rebuild the building. Those plans were put on hold this spring after Halverson purchased the Tailgators Bar and Restaurant in Brandon, S.D.

According to Verbrugge, a rumor that the land that Sharkee’s Bar sits on has been sold to another owner is false.

The incident is still under investigation by the Rock County Sheriff’s Office, the State Fire Marshal and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

There is a $5,000 cash reward available to anyone that provides information leading to an arrest and conviction of a suspect(s) in the case.

Anyone with information about this crime is encouraged to contact the Rock County Sheriff’s Office at (507) 283-5000 and speak with Investigator Jeff Wieneke or Verbrugge. They may also be contacted by email at or

Daily Globe Reporter Erin Trester may be reached at 376-7322.

Erin Trester
Erin Trester is the crime and city reporter for the Daily Globe. She's a native of Lewiston, MN, but moved to Buffalo, NY to attend college and obtained her bachelor's degree in Communications. She started at the Western New York Catholic Newspaper as a reporter in Buffalo, but in October 2013 she returned to her home state to start with the Daily Globe. Most of her spare time is taken up by her 13-year-old thoroughbred named Faith, but some of her other hobbies include reading, fishing and spending time with friends and family. 
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