Police, Fire Detectives Work to Find Los Gatos Arsonist

Agencies begin working together after second fire erupts the early morning of Jan. 12 at home located at 194 Vista Del Monte.

Santa Clara County Fire Department investigators said Thursday afternoon they're working with the to find those responsible for two arson fires at a single-family home in the upscale Vista Del Monte neighborhood.

Santa Clara County Fire Department Arson Unit Chief Dennis Johnsen said the two public safety agencies have teamed up to bring to justice whoever is responsible for two infernos that occurred less than three months part at a house located at 194 Vista Del Monte.

and the gutting the home's garage. Nobody was injured during both fires, but a family dog almost died during the first blaze.

"The investigation is moving forward," Johnsen said.

Johnsen explained county fire investigators partnered with Los Gatos-Monte Sereno Police Capt. Matt Frisby immediately after the second fire occurred. He declined to say whether the agencies had any leads as to who may have caused the blazes.

The fires displaced , from the property she has lived in since 2009. Damages estimated from the first blaze are almost $500,000, while damages from the second fire are estimated at close to $100,000, Johnsen added. The Jan. 12 fire destroyed the home's garage, which contained many of Britt's belongings, Johnsen said.

Johnsen and Frisby said they don't believe the immediate neighborhood is in danger.

"I would say no," Johnsen responded when asked if other incidents of arson could happen in the neighborhood or town. "But I can't guarantee it. The fires were not random. They were specific to that home."

Frisby said the agencies have "made progress" on the investigation. "We're actively investigating the case to determine the relationship between the two fires."

A $10,000 reward has been set up by county fire officials for anyone with information about the crimes.

If anyone has information or may have seen something suspicious in the area the evening of both fires, they are urged to call the Santa Clara County Fire Department's anonymous hotline at 1-888-341-4401.

Mike Calahan January 27, 2012 at 02:36 AM
$10,000 will sever what little loyalty anyone has to this cowardly arsonist. It's only a matter of time before this person's pleading 'not guilty' to a judge holding back laughter.
Irene Aida Garza-Ortiz January 27, 2012 at 04:16 AM
O K, not trying to be the Devils Advocate here. But if this home has been hit twice! There's somthin' rottin' in the cotton!
Dyan Chan January 27, 2012 at 06:25 AM
Nice that the government agencies are working together--hope they solve this crime soon!
Stephanie Bennett January 27, 2012 at 02:20 PM
Sounds like perhaps someone knows them...
Los Gatos Girl January 28, 2012 at 01:51 AM
I sure hope the police catch this person or people. So far, I haven't been too impressed with LGPD. After we were robbed, I called to see how my case was going and was told that my cases wasn't a priority. Since then, there has been robberies, car thefts and cadillac converter thefts in our neighborhood and I haven't heard of any arrests. Arson is really stepping up the severity of the crimes; I hope LGPD can figure this out. Maybe we need to stop paying for police protection and hire an outside source to solve our crimes and keep us safe!


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