Investigators searching for arsonist who burned multiple cars in Long Beach

Josh Haskell Image
Wednesday, September 6, 2023
Authorities seeking arsonist who burned multiple cars in Long Beach
At least five cars in an area of Long Beach have been set on fire recently and authorities have released a photo of a possible suspect.

LONG BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- Imagine walking to your car in the morning to drive to work and you find your vehicle completely destroyed by fire.

It's now happened five times over the last two weeks and the Long Beach Fire Department says someone is intentionally setting cars on fire.

"They all appear to be in parking structures. In close proximity to this geographical area, downtown off of Seaside. The fact that they're all occurring in parking structures lends us to think that they are all related and interconnected," said Jake Heflin, fire captain with the Long Beach Fire Department.

A person of interest has been identified. Three of the fires were started inside the parking structure for residents of Camden Harbor View apartments.

"It's too frequent, it's happening more, it's like Russian roulette with the cars, we don't know whose car is next. Is it going to be my car? Is the guy, am I going to run into the guy when I'm getting up early to go to work. I don't know," said Kimberly Lewis.

Lewis has only lived in the Camden since April, but says she's seen enough and is looking to move out. The lack of security and easy access into the building has made her feel unsafe.

"I'm upset with them because of the amount of money we all spend to live here, we definitely should have security patrol. They say we do, we don't see them.There's usually some little kid walking around in saggy pants saying he's the patrol, but there's no security company. We need that constantly. There's over 400 units here," said Lewis.

If you recognize the person of interest, you're asked to call the Long Beach Fire Department arson tip line at (562)570-2582.

The company that owns Camden Harbor View apartments tells Eyewitness News they're adding security to the building and working closely with the Long Beach Police Department which is also increasing patrols.