Archive for Tuesday, February 26, 2013

No updates on suspected serial arson case; Last fire Dec. 27

February 26, 2013

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Law enforcement officials said last week that there is no news in the investigation of 21 related arson cases dating back to October in south-central Lawrence.

And there have been no other fires that fit a similar pattern since the Dec. 27 early morning trash can fire in the 2500 block of Redbud Lane, Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical Division Chief Jim King said.

Most of the 21 fires since Oct. 21 have been close to occupied apartment buildings, but were small and easily extinguished. No injuries have been reported.

Some of the fires have been in trash cans or bins outside, but many have occurred in hallways or laundry rooms of apartment complexes in a several-block area south of 23rd Street and east of Iowa Street.

King said that in serial arson cases it's common for a time lapse, which can last several months, between crimes.

"It's not unusual for a cooling off period to occur," King said. But that doesn't mean the suspect will not strike again, he said.

Trista Frederick, spokeswoman for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — which has been assisting local law enforcement in the case — said there is still a $7,500 reward for information leading to a suspect.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical at 785-830-7065, the Lawrence Police Department at 785-830-7430 or the TIPS Hotline at 785-843-TIPS (8477).

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Map of recent suspected arsons


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Public safety officials say there have been a series of intentionally set fires at apartment complexes in this area of Lawrence since Oct. 19.

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