A man from Calgary has been arrested in connection to a series of fires set in Saanich on Monday.
Saanich Police have arrested a 26-year old man, who is said to have just arrived in Victoria last week. According to police, the Calgary man became known to authorities in the limited time he had spent in the area.
On March 30, Saanich Police and Fire Departments said they responded to multiple ‘suspicious fires’ set in the area of Camosun College Lansdowne Campus during the early hours of Monday morning. The most serious fire involved three vehicles stored in a maintenance compound at the college, where police said damage was extensive.
Investigators put out a call to the public for help, canvassing the surrounding neighbourhoods for security camera footage, and were able to collect enough evidence to identify the suspect. After the man was identified, authorities sent his information to the neighbouring police departments and, on Wednesday afternoon, Victoria police were able to track the suspect and arrest him near Centennial Square.
“The nature and extent of damage of these deliberate fires was significant. Detectives worked quickly to piece together the events before, during and after the fire to positively identify a suspect. We really appreciate the quick actions of the Victoria Police in locating and making the arrest, as well as the public for coming forward with information,” said Cst. Markus Anastasiades in a press release.
Authorities said the suspect was then transported to the Saanich Police Department and held in custody for a tele-bail hearing.
Detectives are still asking assistance from the public to determine the travels of the suspect prior to the fire.
Further reports were received of other fires in the 3100 block of Service Street near Lansdowne Middle School. Garbage cans were set ablaze, and police are seeking assistance from any persons who may have encountered or witnessed anything suspicious in the area between approximately 5 am and 7 am this morning.
If you have any information or video that may have captured the suspect wearing this red jacket between 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. in the area surrounding Camosun College at Landsdowne please contact Saanich Police at 250-475-4321.