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Orange County arson fires: Person of interest cleared

August 19, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Authorities say the person of interest in a series of arson fires in Orange County was located and is not a suspect at this time.

The arsonist struck several times in Anaheim Hills on Monday. An eyewitness took a cellphone photo of an individual authorities called a "person of interest."

But on Monday night, the family of the person of interest contacted police. After speaking with the individual, he is no longer considered a person of interest.

But the arsonist remains on the loose. Richard Forgay said the flames came within 15 yards of his property.

"It was really scary. I started grabbing pictures and pulling things out of the home. It was pretty, pretty intense," said Forgay.

Then at 3 p.m., there was another fire in Yorba Linda. A half hour later, there was a third fire off of Weir Canyon Road. Flames were once again frighteningly close to homes.

"I could see flames shooting up. I grabbed my little dog and I grabbed my neighbor's dog, grabbed my laptop and ran," said Kim Nordyke of Anaheim Hills.

Investigators say there is clear evidence of arson, but won't say how they believe the fires were started.

Anyone with information was asked to contact Orange County Crime Stoppers at (855) TIP-OCCS.


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