Tent home of Naperville 'protester' burns down

 
 
Updated 7/19/2016 4:29 PM
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  • Thick smoke rises Monday afternoon from a tent fire on Naper Boulevard at Ogden Avenue. The tent was the home of Naperville squatter Scott Huber, who has been living on city streets for nearly 15 years in protest of what he says is wrongdoing by city officials.

    Thick smoke rises Monday afternoon from a tent fire on Naper Boulevard at Ogden Avenue. The tent was the home of Naperville squatter Scott Huber, who has been living on city streets for nearly 15 years in protest of what he says is wrongdoing by city officials. Submitted photo

  • Naperville squatter Scott Huber watches as firefighters respond to a fire at his tent about 1:55 p.m. Monday on the east side of Naper Boulevard just south of Ogden Avenue.

    Naperville squatter Scott Huber watches as firefighters respond to a fire at his tent about 1:55 p.m. Monday on the east side of Naper Boulevard just south of Ogden Avenue. Submitted photo

  • Firefighters attack a blaze at the tent of Naperville squatter Scott Huber. The tent fire began about 1:55 p.m. Monday, and is under investigation by the police and fire departments, authorities said.

    Firefighters attack a blaze at the tent of Naperville squatter Scott Huber. The tent fire began about 1:55 p.m. Monday, and is under investigation by the police and fire departments, authorities said. Submitted photo

  • Scott Huber, left, talks to Naperville police and fire investigators Monday as they look into what caused his tent to burn along Naper Boulevard.

      Scott Huber, left, talks to Naperville police and fire investigators Monday as they look into what caused his tent to burn along Naper Boulevard. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Investigators string fire scene tape outside the former tent home of Naperville squatter Scott Huber on Monday afternoon after the tent caught fire about 1:55 p.m.

      Investigators string fire scene tape outside the former tent home of Naperville squatter Scott Huber on Monday afternoon after the tent caught fire about 1:55 p.m. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Naperville police and fire investigators begin their work Monday afternoon to determine the cause of a fire that burned down the tent home of squatter Scott Huber.

      Naperville police and fire investigators begin their work Monday afternoon to determine the cause of a fire that burned down the tent home of squatter Scott Huber. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Scott Huber has lived on Naperville streets for nearly 15 years, protesting what he perceives as wrongdoing by city officials. His tent home burned down Monday afternoon at its latest site on Naper Boulevard just south of Ogden Avenue.

      Scott Huber has lived on Naperville streets for nearly 15 years, protesting what he perceives as wrongdoing by city officials. His tent home burned down Monday afternoon at its latest site on Naper Boulevard just south of Ogden Avenue. BEV HORNE | Staff Photographer December 2009

A tent on Naper Boulevard just south of Ogden Avenue in Naperville caught fire Monday afternoon, displacing squatter Scott Huber, who has set up camp there for the past few years.

The Naperville police and fire departments are investigating the fire, which began about 1:55 p.m., police Cmdr. Jason Arres said. Huber was not in the tent at the time and no one was injured, he said.

Firefighters arrived to find the tent engulfed in flames with propane tanks inside venting gas under a large amount of pressure, Bureau Chief Andy Dina said. Crews assumed a defensive stance in case of a propane explosion and set up their engine on Naper Boulevard to shoot water at the fire from a hose line while Huber watched from nearby, he said.

More than two hours after the fire, investigators remained on scene working with police to comb through the remains of the tent, Dina said.

The tent had been covered in blue tarps with a sign that listed Huber's Facebook page and called the dwelling a protest site.

Huber has lived on Naperville streets for nearly 15 years in self-proclaimed protest of what he perceives as wrongdoing by city officials, whom he blames for the loss of his home, business and property.

For several years in the early 2000s, he set up camp around downtown streets until the city in 2009 outlawed sleeping, camping and storing property there. Huber then moved his campsite to 4 N. Washington St., outside of a psychologist's office. He relocated from that area to several sites on Ogden Avenue after he was found guilty of misdemeanor charges in 2011 for chasing and taunting the psychologist when she asked him to leave.

Police were interviewing Huber outside of the debris of his former tent home Monday afternoon.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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