Inspectors were unsure Thursday morning if the 104-year-old building was safe enough for them to enter, the Seattle Times reported. No cause has been reported for the Christmas Eve blaze, although some people were speculating about arson linked to the 1983 Wah Mee massacre.
"I think somebody wanted it gone because of its bad vibes," Chris Brabaut, a teacher from Vancouver, British Columbia, told the Times. "Buildings don't start on fire on their own."
The massacre is one of Seattle's most notorious crimes. Three men opened fire in an illegal gambling club in the building's basement in February 1983, killing 13 and wounding one.
The building more recently housed several businesses on the ground floor, including Mon Hei Bakery, Sea Garden restaurant and Palace Decor & Gifts. Fire officials say the blaze began on the vacant third floor.