Suspected Bend arsons overnight grow to eight sites

Published Aug 2, 2013 at 04:16PM

A number of fires believed deliberately set this morning in Bend grew from three to eight after further investigation, Bend Police announced this afternoon.

Three fires were discovered burning in proximity to one another on the city east side between 2:30 a.m. and 5:06 a.m., said Bend Police Sgt. Dan Ritchie. Later in the day, police and Bend Fire Department investigators discovered four more attempts to set vehicles afire around Southeast Airpark Drive, Ritchie said. In addition, a newspaper box in the neighborhood was burned, Ritchie said.

Police asked that anyone with information that would assist the investigation to call the department through Deschutes County Dispatch at 541-693-6911.

A citizen around 2:30 a.m. reported a large bonfire at Ponderosa Park at Southeast 15th Street, police arrived to find the fire had spread into trees. Bend city firefighters extinguished the fire, Ritchie said. Next, at 4:53 a.m., a police officer responding to a Dumpster fire outside the Ariel Glenn Apartment complex, 1700 S.E. Tempest St., used an extinguisher to put out the fire.

Finally, at 5:06 a.m., a Deschutes County sheriff's deputy responding to Ariel Glenn discovered smoke coming from the bed of a pick-up truck parked on Southeast Cessna Drive. The deputy doused the fire with an extinguisher before it damaged the truck, Ritchie said.

He said police believe the incidents are related. He said the cause of the fires are still under investigation.

Check back with The Bulletin for more on this story.

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