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Wellington Police are investigating a series of arsons in Strathmore over the weekend where moderate damage to residential homes resulted.
Detective Sergeant Martin Todd, Wellington CIB, said overnight Saturday 24 October 2009 offenders have gained access to an external laundry area and set fire to items there. The fire burnt itself out causing charring and smoke damage to the walls and ceiling.
The second fire occurred at the same address overnight Sunday 25 October 2009. Offenders set fire to items of property in the porch area and again the fire has burnt itself out.
The third fire occurred to a Sidlaw Street address. At 1.50am, 26 October 2009, offenders went on to the property and set fire to items in the porch area of the address. There was moderate damage to the weatherboards and glass panes to the house smashed as a result of the heat.
Detective Sergeant Todd said, "Regarding the Sidlaw Street fire, the quick actions of neighbours, who extinguished the fire with their garden hose, prevented more serious damage to the address." He said, "Police strongly believe that these fires are linked as occupants at these addresses are related to each other"
The outcome of these fires was moderate damage to the houses, however Detective Sergeant Todd said, "Targeting residential properties, at night, when people were home asleep at the time is extremely concerning." He added, "Our enquiries show that these addresses were specifically targeted and Police urge neighbours in the Tannadyce and Sidlaw Street areas to report all suspicious activity, including people and vehicles in the area, to Police immediately.
"Police patrols in these areas have been increased and other measures to ensure the safety of the occupants have been put in place", Detective Sergeant Todd said.
Detective Sergeant Todd is appealing to anyone in the Strathmore area overnight 24 - 26 October 2009 to contact police if they saw any person, vehicles or other suspicious activity. Or if anyone has any information regarding these arsons they can contact the Wellington Police in confidence, phone 0800 TIPOFF.
Anyone with information should contact Wellington CIB on Tel: (04) 496 3533.