Bethany neighbors unite after third suspicious fire

Neighbors meet in Bethany after house fires ruled arson

BEAVERTON, Ore. -- Neighbors from Beaverton’s North Bethany neighborhood met with law enforcement Wednesday, to talk about a string of suspicious fires in a nearby housing development. 

“We’re unable to go to sleep,” said neighbor, Praba Selva. “We’re going through nightmares, thinking of the safety of our family and what’s going to happen next.”

Selva is among those who live in or around The Highlands at North Bethany development. Since August, investigators have investigated three fires set at homes under construction. The most recent fire happened Nov. 21, at a home near Northwest 167th Avenue and Catalpa Street.

“My son woke up in the middle of the night and I saw the fire,” recalled neighbor, Tony Bennett. “I'm like, ‘oh man, what is going on here?’” 

Washington County Sheriff's Deputies said they were following leads in the case and working with fire investigators and federal agents. They also increased patrols and passed out hundreds of flyers in an effort to make an arrest.

“[Nothing would make us more happy] than to show you the booking photo of the person who burnt the houses,” said Washington County Sheriff’s Deputy Jeff Talbot. “It's hard for us that we don't have that.”

Investigators asked for community’s help and said they wanted neighbors to report anything unusual they saw, no matter how small a detail. Selva said he’s taking that a step further.

“I am personally patrolling around the community,” said Selva, “at least once a night.”

© 2017 KGW-TV


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