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FERNDALE, Wash. -- A SWAT team has been called to a house fire near Ferndale because firefighters found notes and accelerants.

The Whatcom County sheriff's office isn't revealing what the notes said, but it sent multiple deputies to the scene, concerned that a distraught owner was on the property and possibly armed. Firefighters backed out of the burning home while deputies searched a barn on the property.

The Bellingham Herald reports that Bellingham poofficers detained a man at the request of the Whatcom County Sheriff's Office and turned him over to deputies.

The home belongs to Kenneth Cassell who was accused last year of running a puppy mill on the site. He was convicted of animal cruelty and violating a dog breeding law and sentenced to 10 days in jail. Forty-eight dogs were removed from the home.

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