NewsCalifornia News


California man suspected of starting 8 fires in 30 minutes

Posted at 10:15 AM, Apr 19, 2020

SELMA, CALIF. (AP) — A 27-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of starting eight fires in 30 minutes across the central California city of Selma, authorities said.

No injuries were reported from the blazes on grassland and in dumpsters Friday evening, Selma police said.

Officers responding to a fire under a freeway overpass determined it had been intentionally set, police said. Within minutes another fire was reported in brush about a half-block away.

The Selma Fire Department was called to extinguish both blazes.

After that fires were reported in quick succession in dumpsters behind businesses. A shopping cart with debris burned and flames spread to a nearby structure storing flammable liquids, officials said.

Witnesses led officers to Owen Aguilar, who was on a bicycle and confessed to starting eight fires, according to the Fresno Bee. He could face charges including felony arson. It wasn’t known Sunday if he has an attorney.

Aguilar was on parole for criminal threats and has a violent criminal history, the newspaper reported.

Investigators are looking into possible additional fires that Aguilar may have started the day before. A motive isn’t known.