Neighbors react to string of nearly 30 arsons in Lynchburg

Lynchburg & Central Virginia News

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — Police sent out a list on Tuesday of 28 locations where fires have been set throughout Lynchburg since June 13.

To this point, the fires have been small, but they still pose a threat. Neighbors are left wondering why someone is going around setting these fires.

Kori Randolph was on her way to work on Sunday, June 20 when she says she saw a group of a few people. Ten minutes later, she got a call from her mother.

“And she’s like you know there’s a fire across the street and I’m like, ‘what in the world? A fire?’ so they’re telling me — I heard they had walked away for a second,” said Randolph. “Nobody saw anything. Just walked away and then the lawn was on fire, burning up the front of the car and everything.”

A string of fires has been reported in the Diamond Hill and Rivermont areas. Neighbors on the 800 block of Pierce Street say a car was damaged and they believe a man did this.

“Somebody told me they saw someone set something on fire,” Randolph said. “They saw a dude set something on fire and ran off.”

According to Public Information Officer for the Lynchburg Police Department, Carrie Dungan, “They are lighting this bulk and brush on fire on the street and while it’s contained to the street, it doesn’t mean that it can’t be dangerous and that somebody could get hurt.”

The department released a surveillance photo of a suspect vehicle — a mid-2000’s silver/gray Nissan Altima with a sunroof — involved in these fires.

“One of these vehicles can explode or something,” said local worker Gardaner Richardson. “Gas explodes, so I don’t think it’s a good idea to be walking around pranking and setting fires.”

The incident with the biggest impact was a house on the 200 block of Page Street.

According to Richardson, “I have seen it done before. I guess people get bored and don’t have anything else to do. They think they can do stuff like that and not get caught.

Police are asking anyone in the Diamond Hill or Rivermont areas with surveillance cameras to check their footage from the last week. Authorities hope it can help them find whoever is responsible for these fires.

“What’s the point in keep setting fires around Lynchburg?” Randolph added. “I don’t understand, who wakes up and says, ‘I just want to set stuff on fire?’ I just don’t understand.”

Anyone with information about these fires is encouraged to call the Fire Marshal’s Office at (434) 455-6375, Detective Dubie with the Lynchburg Police Department at (434) 455-6102, or Crime Stoppers at (888) 798-5900.

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