At Least 11 More Arson Fires Sparked Overnight, Suspect May Be Using Molotov Cocktail to Set Cars Ablaze
Authorities believe the same arsonist or arsonists responsible for multiple fires early Friday morning in the Hollywood and West Hollywood area struck again early Saturday morning, this time in the Fairfax district and the North Hollywood area. An estimated 11 car fires set in the early morning hours have been added to the disturbing and growing chain of fires set by an unknown suspect or suspects.
"Fires started breaking out in North Hollywood and the San Gabriel Mountain foothills about 1:30 a.m., with three or four cars going up in flames under an apartment building near Burbank Boulevard and Colfax Avenue," according to City News Service.
The Los Angeles Fire Department had a busy night of dousing flames set all over the North Hollywood area, including on Riverside Drive near Colfax Avenue, Weddington Street, Cleon Avenue, Fulcher Avenue, Stagg Street, Tuxford Street, and New Haven Street. The LAFD, however, have not provided many details about the specific locations, the residents affected, or their findings at the scenes of the many fires.
Multiple car fires also were set after 4 a.m. in the Fairfax district and Park La Brea.
The arsonist is apparently using some kind of Molotov cocktail, perhaps in a container able to penetrate car-window glass, according to investigators.
LAFD spokesman Jaime Moore told the press "it is plausible that one person in a car, on a motorcycle or on a bike could have set all the fires, considering the limited area the blazes broke out in," reports The Daily News. Authorities say they are looking for a man driving a white-and- tan, mid-90s model Lexus ES300, but no further suspect description has been determined and/or released. "One law enforcement source told The [Los Angeles] Times that detectives are considering that more than one arsonist is involved," reports L.A. Now.
Local leaders are emphatic they will catch those responsible for the dangerous blazes. For some, the fires have struck eerily close to home, like L.A. County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, whose home is about three blocks from one of the fires. “We want to get these S.O.B.’s before they hurt somebody,” he said at Friday's press conference.
"These are not trash can fires on street corners. We are just a second away from tragedy," said City Councilman Tom LaBonge.
City and county officials have offered a $60,000 reward for information leading to the culprit. Tips can be called into city firefighters at (213) 893- 9800, county firefighters at (800) 633-2836.