Two More Suspicious Fires May Be Work of Arsonist

By: Tim Ciesco Email
By: Tim Ciesco Email

The Grand Junction Fire Department is investigating two suspicious fires that took place Thursday night, saying they may be the work of a serial arsonist.

Fire officials say they're investigating both incidents individually for now, but admit they seem to fit the profile of a serial arsonist that's been attacking homes since January. Officials say these new cases occurred along White Avenue and Bunting Avenue, both streets that have already been attacked. They say both attacks took place overnight, just like all the others.

Martha Scott says she was fast asleep in her home on White Avenue when someone lit several bushes in her front yard on fire.

"I had an infestation of cockroaches in the backyard," said Scott. "In the garden, I missed the biggest one of all."

Firefighters quickly arrived on scene and were able to extinguish the flames soon thereafter. The fire left just a few bushes scorched.

"I feel extremely fortunate and extremely blessed," said Scott.

But the fact that her home was attacked in the first place worries her.

"This person obviously doesn't care about the destruction of property or things," said Scott. "He's escalating and that's a big concern."

A fact that concerns fire officials as well. Since releasing surveillance video of the believed arsonist and opening an arson tip line, authorities say they've received more than a dozen phone calls and followed several leads to no avail.

"So far nothing has led to a solution," said Mike Page, a spokesman for the Grand Junction Fire Department.

But they say by no means do they want people to stop calling, especially those who live in the affected areas.

"It's going to be some little piece of information that ties a bunch of things together, puts the puzzle together for us and allows us to solve it," said Page.

Scott says she and her neighbors are trying to do their part to help.

"We're keeping more lights on, we're paying more attention to dogs barking, and we're being very observant," said Scott.

Officials say that's exactly what downtown residents should be doing.

"Your vigilance, your eyes, your paying attention can make a big difference," said Page.

The second Tuesday night fire took place in the 1400 block of Bunting Avenue. Officials say they received reports that someone was sleeping under stairs at one of the homes and lit them on fire. By the time firefighters arrived, the fire had already been extinguished.

Investigators ask anyone with information about these two fires or any of the others to call them at (970) 244-3777.


KKCO NBC 11 News 2531 Blichmann Avenue Grand Junction, CO 81505 Station Phone: 970.243.1111 Business Fax: 970.243.1770 Newsroom Fax: 970.245.3793 News Tip & Contest Line: 970.255.8477
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