By Vanesa Brashier, firstname.lastname@example.org
A series of suspicious fires in the Moss Bluff area may be the work of arsonists, according to Liberty County Fire Marshal Bill Hergemueller. Over the last month and a half, Liberty County firefighters have responded to eight fires that center in the Lake Grenada community, the most recent being a house fire on Sunday on CR 1335A.
“The biggest part of them, with the exception of one, are vacant houses. We had three fires within 24 hours of each other. Then we went a week without a fire. Then we had the last one on Sunday night,” said Hergemueller, recalling the number of times he has been called to investigate.
While the houses – some damaged by Hurricane Harvey – are vacant and have no significant financial value, the fires could prove costly to firefighters through the loss of a life or equipment. Hergemueller is concerned that a firefighter will eventually be hurt or killed.
“These fires are happening late at night. The firefighters can’t see and there is a lot of growth around the houses. It’s a danger to them every time,” he said.
Hergemueller is asking residents in the community to be vigilant and report suspicious activity to authorities.
“Put up game cameras and call the sheriff’s office is you see something that doesn’t look right,” he said. “We need substantial leads. It’s aggravating that the fires are continuing and it’s hard to tell the public that we are trying to stop this from happening, but we are.”
The fire marshal is not ruling out that the fires may have been set by a group of juveniles in the Lake Grenada community. He says parents need to keep up with their children and look for anything out of the ordinary.
“If these fires are the work of an arsonist or arsonists, they enjoy doing this. They might even brag about it to friends,” he said. “If we find leads that prove it was arson and are able to track down the people doing it, we will prosecute them to the fullest extent of the law.”
Tips may be reported to the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office by calling 936-336-4500.