Charges: Hookah smoking caused Minneapolis pavilion fire
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Prosecutors have charged a Minneapolis man with carelessly disposing of embers from a hookah and accidentally causing the fire that destroyed a historic pavilion on a city lake.
Twenty-three-year-old Nouh Elmi is charged by summons with negligent fires, a felony.
According to the complaint, Elmi dumped hot coals from the hookah — a water-cooled tobacco pipe — behind garbage cans at the building on Bde Maka Ska (buh-DAY’ muh-KAHS’ kah), also known as Lake Calhoun.
The May 16 fire destroyed the pavilion’s Lola on the Lake restaurant concession. The building was later razed.
Elmi remains free ahead of a July 10 court appearance. The Star Tribune says it left messages with Elmi seeking comment Wednesday.