SALT LAKE CITY – Authorities believe a fire that destroyed a world-famous pop bottle collection last week maybe have been caused by arson, police said in a statement issued yesterday.

“You wouldn’t believe how many people were jealous,” said Michael Dobbs, owner of the pop bottle collection. “Pop bottle collecting is a competitive industry – everyone wants to be the best.”

Officer Jane Calhoun of the SLC Police Department said officers found evidence of dry leaves and grass along the house that could easily have been ignited.

“People don’t realize that grass and leaves dry out quickly once we get to spring,” said Calhoun. “Dry leaves and grass are materials an arsonist can use that cause less suspicion than something like lighter fluid.”

“It’s an awful thing to do,” said Dobbs. “I hope they catch the person who took my collection from me.”