January 28, 2021 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Santa Monica Police Arrest Serial Arsonist Suspect Who Lit 10 Fires In 10 Days:

A 54-year-old homeless man who Santa Monica police believe is responsible for at least 10 arson fires over a 10-day span is in custody after an undercover operation.

SMPD Sgt. Jay Moroso said suspect Balbinder Singh Sihota, 54, was arrested on Jan. 9, adding the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office had filed four counts of felony arson against the subject.

Moroso said the fires were located at various locations in the center of the city and involved the lighting of trash dumpsters and discarded Christmas trees.  

He said these fires led to three apartment complexes being damaged by flames.   

“At one of the complexes, the fire had burned into a ground-level garage and was threatening to burn further up, into the living area of the complex,” Moroso said. “Another arson fire caused major damage to a car parked at a car dealership.”

The fires spanned a 10-day period starting on Dec. 30, 2013.  

Moroso said officers and detectives worked diligently in trying to identify the suspect.  

“The Santa Monica Police Department deployed undercover officers in the areas of the arsons in an attempt to catch the person or persons responsible,” he said. “Their efforts paid off when the undercover officers’ attention was drawn to a man who was seen flicking a lighter several times for no apparent reason and acting suspiciously in the area of where the arsons were taking place.”

The man was detained and a detective was able to respond to the scene and identify the suspect as the arsonist, based on investigative work he had already completed on the case, Moroso said.

Two other witnesses were also questioned at the time of the detention and they implicated the suspect in several arsons, Moroso said.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is asked to call Detective D’Andrea at 310.458.6679.

in News
Related Posts

Bomb Threat Emailed to Santa Monica Middle School

January 26, 2021

January 26, 2021

Incident prompts evacuation of around 20 adults at Lincoln Middle School Tuesday By Sam Catanzaro A bomb threat was emailed...

Edify TV: Venice Flying Carousel

January 26, 2021

January 26, 2021

Since 2018 Venice artist Robin Murez has been working on a project called the Venice Flying Carousel. Learn more in...

New Medical Center Planned for Santa Monica

January 26, 2021

January 26, 2021

A medical office and research center is planned to rise in a Westside neighborhood. Learn more in this video made...

‘Doctor’s Office on Wheels’ Homeless and Those at Risk of Losing Homes

January 26, 2021

January 26, 2021

Venice Family Clinic launches mobile clinic van aimed at preventing homelessness By Chad Winthrop A Westside non-profit has launched a...

Man Sentenced to Life in Prison for Violent Santa Monica Home Invasion

January 26, 2021

January 26, 2021

Rashad Devon Harris sentenced to life in state prison for 2018 violent home invasion and attempted rape By Sam Catanzaro...

Edify TV: Residents Frustrated With Local Country Club

January 25, 2021

January 25, 2021

Westside residents living near one of the most exclusive LA county clubs have a bone to pick in this video...

SMMUSD Study Session Outlines Potential Campus Upgrades: Santa Monica Beat – January, 25, 2021

January 25, 2021

January 25, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * SMMUSD Study Session Outlines Potential Campus Upgrades * First Baptist Church...

Body Found in Santa Monica Beachside Gazebo

January 25, 2021

January 25, 2021

Man found in Ocean Avenue gazebo Saturday By Sam Catanzaro A body was found in a gazebo near the beach...

Edify TV: Affordable Senior Housing Rises in Westside Neighborhood

January 24, 2021

January 24, 2021

A four-story senior affordable housing project is rising in a Westside neighborhood. Learn more in this video made possible by...

SMa.r.t. Column: Saving a Failed Marriage – Part 2

January 22, 2021

January 22, 2021

Every 8 years, the state requires cities to update their planning code’s “housing element” to reflect the number of dwelling...

Rise of The Digital Nomads Changing The Way We Rent?

January 22, 2021

January 22, 2021

Today on Westside Real Estate Show* Matt Damon Lists Palisades home for $21 Million.* Rise of The Digital Nomads Changing...

Edify TV: COVID-19 Outbreak at Santa Monica Government Office

January 21, 2021

January 21, 2021

Over a dozen employees have tested positive for COVID-19 at a Santa Monica government building since January 1. Learn more...

Santa Monica Students Receive 2021 Education Awards from The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Westside Coalition

January 21, 2021

January 21, 2021

Seven area students were presented Education Awards by The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Westside Coalition at the first-ever...

Santa Monica New Roads Graduate Amanda Gorman Shines At Inauguration: Santa Monica Beat – January, 21, 2021

January 21, 2021

January 21, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Santa Monica New Roads Graduate Amanda Gorman Shines At Inauguration *...