Man detained in connection with Los Angeles arson attacks


A passerby inspects damaged cars following an overnight fire started by a suspected serial arsonist in Hollywood, California. 35 fires have been reported in the past two days.


Frederic J. Brown

Police in Los Angeles say they have detained a man in connection with a string of arson attacks across the city.

According to the LA Times, the development came after more than 10 fires were started in Los Angeles and West Hollywood late last night.

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Officials said it was still too early to say whether the man detained is responsible for the 55 suspected arson attacks that have been reported over the past week.

The unnamed man – described as a "person of interest" – has not been arrested, according to the Associated Press, but is in police custody for questioning.

However, law enforcement sources told the Times that they believe the person in custody is the same man seen on surveillance camera footage from a Hollywood Boulevard parking lot where a car fire was reported. The footage, released to the public yesterday, shows a man between 20 and 30 years old with a receding hairline and a shoulder-length ponytail, the AP said.

The man detained this morning was apprehended by LAPD officers who flooded the area where the latest fires were reported, as part of an operation to "identify and arrest the suspect during the arson series and before he could go back into hiding," according to the Times.

Officials have indicated that they believe the attacks may be the work of more than one arsonist, given the number and geographical spread of the fires.

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