Persons of interest identified in suspicious fires, not a suspect

LANSINGBURGH, N.Y. – The Troy Police Department has identified persons of interest in connection to a suspicious Lansingburgh fire, and have ruled him out as a suspect.

However, fires continue to be set, including one that occurred in Lansingburgh Monday night. The frequency and timing of the fires have authorities on high alert.

Most of the incidents have taken place at night without any witnesses around.

“You could smell the plastic and everything burning,” Joshua Weeks said.

It began Monday night when someone was banging on Weeks’ back door. He answered and could see the flames.

“It was really close to the garage,” Weeks said. “If that went up, who knows how far it would have spread.”

Alleyways in both Troy and Lansingburgh have become a focus for authorities as they’ve been investigating possible arson cases.

“Me and a couple members of my family actually came out with some water and an extinguisher and put it out,” Weeks said.

Amy Middlestead lives on the property.

“It’s deliberate,” she said. “Who don’t know who it is? I mean, there is a fire bug in Lansingburgh.”

Middlestead said this isn’t the first time nearby things have been set ablaze.

“About five times with the garbage cans now,” she said.

Since July, Middlestead said the porch and garage have also been set on fire. These incidents occurred in a time when police have been investigating about a half dozen possible arson cases.

As a mother of two girls, Middlestead said she’s on edge.

“If it happens at three o’clock in the morning, then what?” she asked.

Middlestead and her neighbors hope something is done soon to prevent a potential tragedy from ruining innocent lives.

“People don’t think about that,” Weeks said.

Authorities have not said if any of the fires are related, or if the person they are looking for is connected to one or more.

Anyone with insight to the recent fires is asked to contact police.

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