2 possible arson fires investigated in Middletown

2:08 p.m Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017 Middletown
Middletown fire officials are investigating two possible arson fires in the city. FILE PHOTO

UPDATE @ 2 p.m.: Deputy Fire Chief Jeff Spaulding said he believes the home fire in the 1700 block of Church Avenue was “intentionally set,” though no arrests have been made.

He estimated damages to the second floor at between $60,000 to $70,000.

INITIAL REPORT:

Middletown fire and police investigators are determining whether people who allegedly started a house fire and poured lighter fluid on a car should be charged, according to police reports.

Police and fire were called Sunday morning to a residence in the 1700 block of Church Avenue on a report of a house fire. There were numerous people standing outside the residence, and two juveniles told police they saw a man enter the residence with a red gas can.

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The same man was seen leaving the residence with the can and he ran eastbound down Church toward Grimes Street, the juveniles told police. Then they saw smoke coming from the residence, the report said.

The description the juveniles gave police matched the description of a man who lives in the house, according to the report.

The property owners told police they were in the process of evicting the man and his girlfriend.

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On Tuesday, police and fire officials responded to a residence in the 2000 block of Hill Avenue and a female told police that her husband was trying to light her car on fire.

The man was seen standing on the hood of his wife’s 2002 Ford pouring what appeared to be lighter fluid, the report said.

When the woman called police, her husband ran toward Roosevelt Avenue, the report said.

Fire investigators smelled some type of accelerant coming from inside the vehicle, according to the report. The vehicle’s seats and carpet were wet, the report said.

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