Fire investigators testify in Ray Abou Arab trial

Fire investigators testify in Ray Abou Arab trial

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Week three of the murder trial of Ray Abou Arab began Monday morning. He's being charged with the deaths of two Toledo firefighters, Stephen Machcinski  and Jamie Dickman.

The first week was centered around carefully selecting a jury of 12 that deemed fair. The second week, dozens of witnesses were called to testify on behalf of the state. In the upcoming week, the hope is to hand the case over to the jury for deliberation.

Fire investigator Tim Schreadly was called to testify if he and his K9 partner Zeffer, found any accelerants in the Magnolia Apartment building a day after the fire. The dog is able to sniff out gasoline, kerosene, and other accelerants used to start an arson fire.

Zeffer did in fact have several hits in the building including in the garage where a box of ceiling tiles was dumped on the ground.

When the defense turned to question the witness, the courtroom learned there was a can of gasoline and a snow blower in the garage Zeffer had alerted Schreadly about.

The defense then asked if the damage of a building increases the difficulty of finding the origin of a fire. Schreadly replied by agreeing to the increase in difficulty but also said that it was not impossible.

A second fire investigator who used his K9 to search through the Huron Market did detect accelerants in a trash specifically on three items. The market is the store attached to the apartment.

A forensic chemist also took the stand to analyze the clothes Ray Abou Arab was wearing on the day of the fire.

She testified the clothing tested positive gasoline. She also testified floor mats gathered at the crime scene and Ray Abou Arab's car tested positive for gasoline.

The jury also got to see the clothing firefighters Machcinski and Dickman were wearing on the date of the fire. The clothes had holes in them, likely from the intense heat during a flashover.

A witness testified in the week prior that an investigator allowed Ray Abou Arab inside the Huron Market alone.

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