Kitten’s Kabaret fire was an inside job, police say

Marlon Dean and Eric Cooper

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The fire several months ago at Kitten’s Kabaret was set by two employees, police say.

In November, WREG reported on the fire in the 2800 block of Lamb Place and was told the business had already been locked up for the night when fire fighters arrived on the scene. Crews had to force their way inside the building to put out the flames.

After investigating, detectives learned the managers, Marlon Dean and Eric Cooper, closed the business early that evening. Once everyone was gone, Dean was captured on video entering a back storage area. By the time he comes back out, fire and smoke can be seen emanating from the room.

Instead of calling for help, police said he left the building, got into his car and then began talking with Cooper.

They both leave as smoke begins pouring out of the front doors.

Investigators said gasoline started the fire.

Both men have been taken into custody and charged with arson.