Crews extinguished the fire quickly but the vehicle was fully destroyed. Photo courtesy of Redmond Police

Crews extinguished the fire quickly but the vehicle was fully destroyed. Photo courtesy of Redmond Police

Serial arsonist strikes seven Redmond vehicles

Police are investigating the arsons but have not yet arrested a suspect.

Redmond detectives are investigating a series of arson incidents that have occurred throughout the Education Hill and Downtown neighborhoods during the last week of September.

Officers have responded to seven separate but related fires set inside vehicles since Sept. 24. All but one of the fires were minor and had already gone out by the following morning, when most of the victims discovered the damage.

The victims seem to be randomly chosen, according to police, and fire investigators have not found any evidence suggesting the suspect used an accelerant, such as gasoline.

The largest and most recent fire occurred in the early hours of Sept. 28, and completely engulfed the vehicle in flames, spreading even to the covered parking structure on the 17200 block of Northeast 85th Place. Police and fire crews responded and extinguish the fire quickly.

Police found evidence of an additional small fire in another vehicle nearby. The suspect seems to simply start the fires using paper or a similar fuel.

“The good news is that there have been no new incidents reported since the 28th,” said Andrea Wolf-Buck, Redmond Police Department’s public information officer. “The bad news is that we haven’t arrested anyone. But a lot of evidence has been gathered from the scenes and detectives are busy [investigating].”

RPD also received reports of four vehicle prowls with small fires set inside sometime during Sept. 23 and 24 in the neighborhood around Northeast 79th Street and 170th Avenue Northeast.

There is no connection between the victims or vehicles targeted, other than that they were within a small area of each other. Presumably this was for convenience, Wolf-Buck said, adding that each vehicle was also unlocked.

The unknown suspects have not taken anything of value from the cars.

“This one is definitely an unusual series of [vehicle crimes] in Redmond. Locking your car, that would be a good way to start [protecting yourself],” Wolf-Buck said. “I know we say this a lot, but call police right away if you see someone acting suspiciously. Please pass that along, sometimes even really small tips can help.”

Redmond fire investigators and police detectives are continuing to investigate this case. Officials ask for people to call police immediately if they see anyone acting suspiciously in their neighborhoods. Any tips about these incidents can be reported 24 hours a day to the non-emergency line at425-556-2500.

“Lock your cars and let us know,” Wolf-Buck said. “We’re working on this case and hopefully something will come of it soon.”

Fire crews put out a vehicle fire caused by an unknown arsonist in the early hours of Sept. 28 in Redmond. Photo courtesy of Redmond Police

Fire crews put out a vehicle fire caused by an unknown arsonist in the early hours of Sept. 28 in Redmond. Photo courtesy of Redmond Police

More in News

President’s emergency declaration sparks immediate legal backlash

Attorney General Bob Ferguson said his team will sue the White House if federal funds originally intended for Washington state are interrupted.

Bill targets sexual health curriculum in Washington schools

Senate Bill 5395 is co-sponsored by 17 Democratic representatives and introduced by Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Federal Way.

According to King County’s Mental Illness and Drug Dependency (MIDD) annual report, Seattle had the highest rate of people using services at 36 percent of the total, followed by 31 percent from South King County, 18 percent from the greater Eastside, and 7 percent from north county including Shoreline.
Study shows King County’s treatment funding is making progress

A document on the county’s .1 percent health sales tax was accepted Wednesday by the county council.

Children’s play area at Seadrunar. Photo by Lauren Davis via Facebook
Seedy side of Seadrunar: Drug rehab center accused of neglect, exploitation

Public records reveal that Seattle facility was accused of neglecting children and clients in its care.

Representative Suzane DelBene and Redmond resident, Yasmin Ali attended the State of the Union last week. Photo courtesy of Suzane DelBene Twitter.
Redmond’s Ali attends State of the Union with Rep. DelBene

DelBene invited Ali as her State of the Union guest.

New Friends of Youth CEO, Paul Lwali, will replace Terry Pottmeyer. Courtesy photo.
Friends of Youth hires new CEO

Pottmeyer steps down; Lwali becomes new Friends of Youth CEO.

Russell Wilson and Ciara spoke Friday at the Tukwila Library to Foster students and other attendees as their Why Not You Foundation joined forces with the King County Library System and JPMorgan Chase to launch the DREAM BIG: Anything is Possible campaign. Photo by Kayse Angel
Russell Wilson and Ciara launch DREAM BIG campaign

Partnership with King County libraries dovetails with scholarship program for local students.

Somali community faces SeaTac displacement

Proposed redevelopment threatens the heart of the Somali business community.

Most Read