Bail was set at $50,000 on Saturday, May 30, for a man who lit a fire next to propane tanks at a Santa Monica gas station.
Officers of the Santa Monica Police Department were called out to investigate a report of arson at a gas station at 4:30 am in the 300 block of Pico Boulevard.
En route to the scene the officers were told by dispatch that the suspect, identified as a black male wearing dark colored attire and carrying a backpack, had started a fire right next to the propane gas tanks situated in the courtyard of the gas station.
Upon arrival the officers spotted the suspect replica watches who was walking around the forecourt near the now smoldering garbage next to the aforementioned propane gas tanks.
The officers detained the suspect and then spoke to the store clerk and a witness.
The witness told the officers that the suspect had been sleeping next to a gas pump and the store clerk had woken the suspect up and then returned to the store.
The witness added that the suspect had then collected a quantity of papers and other combustible garbage from the trash cans at the location and had placed them next to the propane gas tanks before setting them alight.
The officers then searched the suspect and discovered that he possessed a lighter and a book of matches.
Based upon the statements of the clerk and the witness the officers arrested this 46-year-old resident of Arleta and took him to jail.
During the trip to the jail the suspect admitted starting the fire.
Editor’s Note: These reports are part of a regular police coverage series entitled “Alert Police Blotter” (APB), which injects some minor editorial into certain police activities in Santa Monica. Not all of The Mirror’s coverage of incidents involving police are portrayed in this manner. More serious crimes and police-related activities are regularly reported without editorial in the pages of the Santa Monica Mirror and its website, smmirror.com.