7-year-old killed in suspected arson fire in Fresno, homicide investigation launched

Police chief Paco Balderrama said investigators had found that some sort of accelerant was used on the front and back doors.

Thursday, July 7, 2022
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A homicide investigation is underway after a 7-year-old child was killed in a suspected arson fire in a central Fresno home on Wednesday morning.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A 7-year-old child was killed in a suspected arson fire in a central Fresno home early on Wednesday morning.

Authorities have now launched a homicide investigation into the child's death.

Just before 4:30 in the morning, fire crews arrived at the home on N. College and McKenzie to find it completely engulfed by flames.

There were six people inside. Five of them managed to escape.

One of them, a 13-year-old, broke his leg while jumping from a second-floor window, and is now in a local hospital.

The 7-year-old child, Isaac Vallejo, could not escape, and was killed.

At a news conference on Wednesday afternoon, Fresno police chief Paco Balderrama called the suspected arson a 'horrible, horrible act'.

He said investigators had found that some sort of accelerant was used on the front and back doors of the home.

"A 7-year-old innocent little boy was killed, murdered through a very deliberate act. And we do intend to bring this family justice," he said.

Isaac was the youngest of five siblings. Family members say he loved being around family and loved the outdoors.

Just days before the deadly fire, on June 25th, officers responded to shots fired into the same home. No arrests were made in that incident.

The Red Cross will be assisting the displaced family.

Investigators are asking for the public's help to find out who was responsible for the tragedy.

"I'm not going to put up with something like this happened in my community. And I assume that the community is not going to put up with it either.... If they know anything, if they saw anything or if they have video of people going into the house, we want them to reach out," said Chief Balderrama.

If you have information, you can call Crimestoppers or the Fresno Police Department.

During the day, a memorial grew outside the house.

Candles, flowers and balloons were left by grieving loved ones.

Family and friends held a vigil and released balloons with special messages remembering Isaac.

The family has lost everything and is having to start over.

A GoFundMe page has been started to help them with expenses.