SANTA MONICA (CBSLA) — A possible pyromaniac is on the loose in Santa Monica.

Police have had at least 15 trash fires close to people’s homes in the past two weeks.

A scared Santa Monica resident recorded one of the dumpster fires near her home in the 1100 block of 12th Street. She and others believe the fire was intentionally set.

“The fact that it could catch to the electric pole or the residential homes nearby is extremely alarming and worrisome and keeps all of us awake at night,” said the resident.

After seeing a series of fires that have been set in or near trash cans close to residential buildings, the Santa Monica Police Department is now investigating what they believe to be arson.

They say on Dec. 22 there were eight fires. Then on Jan. 1, there were seven more.

“We need to put an end to this crime. It’s unacceptable,” said the resident.

Investigators say all of the fires have been set north of Santa Monica Boulevard. They’re primarily happening in alleyways.

The time frames of the fires vary, so detectives haven’t found a pattern yet.

“It’s very concerning. I feel it may be the start of a firebug. It could get bigger,” said Lauri Crossman.

Fortunately, no reports of injuries or major damage. But residents and police want this to stop before the fires spread to structures.

“I am talking to all of my neighbors about it. I kind of keep an eye out anyways, but I’m just gonna make sure I know what people are doing when they’re doing it,” said Crossman.

Police say they don’t have a suspect yet but they are working with fire arson investigators.

They ask that you please call Santa Monica Police with any information.


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