Crime - Sacto 911

Former home of Sacramento’s popular Squeeze Inn burns

The former home Sacramento’s popular Squeeze Inn burger joint burned Wednesday night.

Sacramento Fire Department crews responded at 8:20 p.m. to a report of commercial structure fire in the 7900 block of Fruitridge Road. Battalion Chief Chris Ortiz said they arrived to find heavy fire coming from the back of the approximately 100-square-foot building. Power lines were down, delaying firefighting efforts, but he said the fire was contained within about 10 minutes.

The building, which housed the popular eatery until 2010, is in a strip mall, but Ortiz said no other buildings were damaged.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. Because the building was vacant and windows and entries barred, the fire is considered suspicious, Ortiz said.

The Squeeze Inn moved from its tiny quarters in February 2010 to a larger site at 5301 Power Inn Road, Suite 100. It had been targeted by a lawsuit claiming violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The lawsuit, filed by a woman with disabilities, alleged that parking and the main entrance were not accessible to disabled people.

The suit also charged that the inside seating area, with room for 12 counter stools, did not have accessible tables and that the outside seating area was difficult to navigate.

The lawsuit prompted an outcry from loyal patrons on the Internet, in letters to the editor and news reports. Supporters defended the restaurant, citing its unique ambience as part of its charm.

The lawsuit was eventually dropped, but the owner decided to move to avoid another lawsuit.