Minor Arrested in Connection With Goleta Preschool Arson Fire

Following a string of arson fires set around Goleta on Monday night — including one that caused major damage to a preschool — a male juvenile suspect was arrested for the fires Tuesday.

On Monday, at 11:41 p.m., Santa Barbara County firefighters responded to the first and most destructive of the blazes at the Growing Babies Preschool and Infant Center and the Church of Religious Science located on the 400 block of North Turnpike Road, according to Captain Daniel Bertucelli, Santa Barbara County Fire’s public information officer.

Shortly after the preschool fire was extinguished and determined to be intentionally set, firefighters and fire investigators responded between midnight and 3:30 a.m. to two more intentionally set fires on Vala Drive. The fires destroyed several garbage cans and a portable toilet.

County firefighters worked with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office and the Carpinteria/Summerland Fire Department investigators to apprehend the suspect, who is unnamed because he is a minor.


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