Fire Marshal Investigates Early Morning Arson


A vehicle fire that broke out early this morning near the Arden Arms apartment complex in the 3700 block of Arden Road is being investigated as an arson, San Angelo Fire Marshal Ross Coleman said.

The fire, which was reported at approximately 3:06 a.m., involved a silver Mistibushi Eclipse and was initially called in as a structure fire, Coleman said.

Coleman indicated that the vehicle was engulfed in flames close to one of the apartment dwellings, resulting in a brief evacuation of residents until the fire was extinguished. The fire department is now attempting to determine whether or not the fire was intentionally set with an accelerant. 

"Samples were gathered at the scene and are being sent to the state fire marshal's office for analysis, pending a report four to seven weeks from now," he said.  

Coleman could not confirm whether or not the arson was related to a string of auto burglaries and thefts reported in the same area over the weekend.

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The car wasn't just near the apartments it was right at the building. You can see the corner of the building in one of the photos.
And to whoever did this, whether it was a prank or theft attempt, it could very easily have been murder! It's not shown in the photos but the burning car was only about 8 feet from a gas main on the building. There are also gas pipes running along the exterior of the building at several points. If that had blown it would have destroyed this building as well as damaging the buildings on either side. At least a dozen people in this building alone could have been killed, including several very small children!

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