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Police Say Arsonist Set Multiple Fires

arsonist fireMEDFORD, Ore. — Medford Police are searching for a suspect who could be the culprit in starting multiple fires Wednesday around Medford.

Each of the fires were small and caused little damage. No one was hurt.

The first happened before dawn. The last at just after 6:00 Wednesday night.

At 4:30 a.m., Police and Fire responded to the alley behind 320 N. Holly St. for some hay bales which were on fire. Then, at 4:53 a.m., officials responded to 444 N. Grape St. for a shed that had been burned, but the fire was extinguished and damage was minimal.

At 5:17 a.m., Police and Fire were directed to a fence on fire behind 535 Pennsylvania Ave. The fire damaged a large section of fence but did not burn the outbuilding which was just feet away. Nearly an hour and a half later, at 6:38 a.m., Police and Fire responded to another alley way behind 329 N. Holly St. for an outbuilding on fire.  The last fire came Wednesday night at a vacant home at 1704 West Main Street. Medford Police say the fire started at a fence line near the alley, spread through dry grass and damaged a shed.

“It’s really frustrating because we were out and about in that area the entire time responding to the fires, and when the suspect is basically a block or two away, because we’re responding to other fires as we’re on scene of another fire,” said Lt. Mike Budreau with Medford Police.

Budreau said each of the five fires was intentionally set, and said there was not evidence of any other fire source at the crime scenes.

Each of the fires was set in an alley behind homes. A neighbor along Pennsylvania Ave. said the alley there has had numerous problems with homeless people in the past.