Alleged serial arsonist in Fresno strikes again

An alleged serial arsonist in Fresno strikes again. But this time, authorities say witnesses saw him get away.
An alleged serial arsonist in Fresno strikes again. But this time, authorities say witnesses saw him get away.

A Southeast Fresno house could be the target of a serial arsonist for the second time in weeks.

The latest blaze started Saturday afternoon near Orange and California avenues. This street is one of several areas in Fresno that firefighters are keeping a close eye on.

Behind me people are boarding up what remains of a shed in the backyard of this vacant home.

It's the second time this property has been set on fire in just weeks.

Deputy Fire Marshall Don MacAlpine said, "We are having an increased amount of fires in an identified area."

MacAlpine says a fire that charred this shed could be the work of a suspect who's been setting fires in Fresno.

"Three things are required to have a crime," said MacAlpine. "You need a victim, you need a suspect and you need opportunity."

During the past month MacAlpine says Fresno fire has taken down commercial fires in the downtown area, fires along the highway corridor, and structure fires in this Southeast Fresno neighborhood. They all seem to be man-made fires, and all possibly connected.

"Today's fire may or may not be related," said MacAlpine. "I'm treating all fires right now in this area that I just mentioned as possibly related to the serial fires."

Saturday's fire is tipping off investigators to a possible suspect. Witnesses say they saw a man in his early 20's, riding away from the scene on a bicycle.

MacAlpine asks neighbors to stay aware of their surroundings, and keep a close eye on their property.

"We're working very hard to take care of the third leg of that triangle and that is the suspect," explained MacAlpine.

No one was injured in this fire, and MacAlpine says there's minimal damage in the shed as crews were able to get to the scene quickly.



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news fire arson Fresno Fresno - Southeast
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