Search underway for arsonist who set 4 destructive fires in Lakewood
RELATED VIDEO: Scroll down for Sky2 video over the fire
LAKEWOOD, Colo. — One large carport fire and several smaller fires less than a mile away all erupted in Lakewood early Tuesday morning, causing officials to launch an arson investigation.
The large carport is located at 341 South Estes Street, just south of Alameda between Wadsworth and Kipling. West Metro Fire confirmed calls started coming in around 5:48 a.m., reporting that the structure and many of the vehicles inside it had been engulfed in flames. A second alarm was called after fire crews arrived to find cars exploding in the area.
Amy Dennison saw one car on fire right outside her window around 5:45 a.m. “I screamed at my husband to get up I called 911 and then I ran outside and went to all the buildings and started pounding on people’s doors.” In part thanks to her everyone got out safely.
“It sounded like gunshots and the flames were way up in the sky and we thought for sure the buildings were going to be next,” Dennison says.
When all was said and done, the carport fire turned out to be the third fire reported in a one-mile radius in a span of about two hours.
Emergency crews confirmed the first fire was reported around 4:22 a.m. When crews arrived on scene at 8457 West Alaska Place, they found that a car fire had spread to and mostly destroyed the home on the property.
The fire destroyed the upper floor where all of the family members’ bedrooms were. They escaped without injury as well.
Just over 45 minutes later around 5:10 a.m., callers reported another car fire less than a half mile away near the intersection of Cedar Avenue and South Cody, which is just east of Colorado Christian University
The carport fire was reported about 45 minutes later, then came the final reported blaze at 364 South Estes, which is just two properties away from the carport. Fire crews arrived on the scene of the final fire to find one car had been damaged.
West Metro Fire investigators spent the day examining the charred ruins of vehicles and structures. They’re looking to see if the arsonist use an accelerant to help spread the fires.
“With a car it’s really hard to tell because a car already has gasoline in it and a lot of plastics and foam and rubber and so it takes a lot of analysis,” says West Metro Fire Marshal Bruce Kral.
West Metro Fire and Lakewood Police would like to hear from anyone who may have seen anything suspicious prior to 6 a.m. in the area of W. Alameda Avenue and S. Estes Street. They can call either agency.
- West Metro Fire: 303-989-4307
- Lakewood Police: 303-987-7111