SAN BERNARDINO (CBSLA.com) — Authorities have offered a reward to help nab an arson suspect who torched a mobile phone store in San Bernardino.
Officials say the fire was set at Omar’s Wireless on January 23.
The business is located in a strip mall on West Foothill Boulevard and Meridian Avenue.
Adrianna Weingold, reporting for KCAL9, said investigators believe someone purposefully threw a Molotov cocktail into the building.
“Putting other businesses at risk, as well as first responders lives at risk, is pretty serious to us,” said Investigator Steve Tracy with the San Bernardino Arson Task Force.
The fire department is just a few blocks away from Omar’s and investigators say they were on scene within minutes. They say it had to be something violent, a large explosive, to cause flames this big, so fast. and they’re hoping someone saw what happened.
“It doesn’t matter what it is, if it’s a vehicle that’s out of place that you didn’t recognize, somebody you didn’t recognize in the area, that’s significant to us,” says Tracy.
The owner of the wireless store didn’t want to go on camera because he told Weingold he fears for his safety.
The fire bomb destroyed the store and caused major damage to neighboring businesses. Now The ATF is investigating the explosion along with the San Bernardino City Fire Department and they need the public’s help.
“We are offering a $2,500 reward for information that will lead to an arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the fire bombing,” said Howard Sanders, a special agent with the ATF.
If you have any information about this case, arson investigators have set up a special hotline (909) 383-5260. The phone line is available 24 hours a day including weekends and holidays.