Neighbors suspect neighborhood is target for vacant house fires

Neighbors suspect neighborhood is target for vacant house fires
(Source: WTOL)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Residents living in a north Toledo neighborhood have suspicions that their street is being targeted for house fires and they are worried their safety.

Toledo Fire Investigators believe the two vacant house fires that happened on east Bancroft Street are suspicious, but right now they can't determine the causes of the fires or if they are connected in anyway.

Lily Lopez, has lived on east Bancroft since the 1970's and lives just feet from the second vacant house that went up in flames last weekend.

"A scary feeling. It's very scary. Can't sleep at night anymore," Lopez said. ""We were kind of leery because the house next door to this had caught on fire. And my son had already said, 'we better keep an eye on this one, I think this one is next.' I guess he spoke to soon."

The Toledo Fire Department says they need more neighbors like Lily and her family to speak up with any information they may have.

"Obviously being in close proximity stands out and lends us to be very concerned," said Pvt. Sterling Rahe with the Toledo Fire Department. "Make sure that if you see something say something. Don't hesitate to call. If you think there is something out of normal in your neighborhood let somebody know so we can investigate that along with Toledo Police."

Private Sterling Rahe said his department takes arson fire very seriously and will exhaust all investigative resources to determine if these are arson fires and find the suspects behind the match.

"Find those  individuals and prosecute those. We've talked about this in the past how aggressive our fire investigating team is, along with Lucas County Prosecutors and Toledo police," explained Rahe.

For Lily and her family, they plan to keep their eyes and ears open this weekend.

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