Last night Winnipeg Police arrested a 20-year-old man and charged him with 18 counts of arson and two counts of disregard for human life. Get this – this jerk was on probation for pleading guilty to setting 19 fires in River Heights two years ago! He was given no jail time, just two years probation for setting the fires! He breached probation and he was in possession of an incendiary device, another breach of his probation. They nabbed a known arsonist. He apparently lives in my neighbourhood but was caught at a fire in Fort Richmond in south Winnipeg, a long way from here.
Coincidentally there was another fire on Fleet Avenue (4 blocks away) last night about three a.m. and it appeared to have the same M.O. as the previous arsons. However, the known arsonist was already in custody when this fire was set. This raises several possibilities: they nabbed the wrong guy and the firebug is still volatile or last night’s fire was a copycat fire, something fire investigators consider when a rash of blazes erupt, or some other reason I can’t fathom. Not having any surety the actual pyro is behind bars and still seeing police cars patrolling the area brings cold comfort to us in Fort Rouge tonight. It’s starting to get dark now. No sirens so far.