Fire investigators announced Thursday that the August 17, 2010 fire that damaged Taunton CIty Hall was arson.

“This is an ongoing criminal investigation by State Police assigned to the Office of the State Fire Marshal, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Taunton Fire Department and the Taunton Police Department,” said State Fire Marshal Stephen D. Coan, in a statement.

The fire started in an attic record storage area and caused an estimated $8.3 million in damage.

“This was a significant fire that caused severe disruption to the city’s ability to provide service to its citizens,” said Taunton Fire Chief Timothy J. Bradshaw.

“Investigators have known the cause of the fire for some time but in order to protect certain aspects of the ongoing criminal investigation state and federal investigators asked us to withhold that information until now,” said Police Chief Edward Walsh.

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John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston's Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at [email protected]. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

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