Fire damages Chatham County, NC courthouse, John Edwards sex tape survives
PITTSBORO (AP) - Fire severely damaged a historic North Carolina courthouse where the clock tower collapsed overnight.
The clock tower at the Chatham County Courthouse in Pittsboro collapsed early Friday. About 15 firefighters poured water on hot spots still burning from the fire, which began Thursday afternoon.
The cause of the fire hasn't been determined, although a city spokeswoman says renovations had begun about two months ago and scaffolding covered the entire building. The State Bureau of Investigation and Chatham County fire officials are investigating.
The courthouse was built in 1881 and is listed on the National Historic Registry.
The building has been the site of an ongoing dispute about a videotape purportedly showing former presidential candidate John Edwards in a sexual encounter. Superior Court Judge Abraham Penn Jones told The Associated Press on Thursday that the materials turned over in the case are in a vault away from the courthouse.