|Fire on Highway 441, South of Ocala, Florida. November 14,2004|
Sunday, November 14, 2004 at 10:30 A.M. a call came in to emergency dispatch in Marion County Fire and Rescue, reporting multiple structure fires, when the fire department arrived they found 3 abandoned commercial buildings involved. The buildings were located on the east side of Hwy 441 one mile north of Sunset Harbor. The first building (closest to the Highway) and the third building (furthest from the highway) were fully engulfed in flame, the middle building had almost no involvement, none of the structures had power going to them, leading fire and police officials to believe the fire was suspicious. The proximity to the fires set by "the Little Lake Weir arsonist" had the arson task force investigating.
According to District Captain, Chris Hays, approximately 20 vehicles responded 14 fire apparatus and 6 command cars. Traffic was stopped in both directions for about an hour, due to the heavy smoke banking onto the Highway driven by winds of 20 mph from the east. There were no injuries. 2 of the buildings were completely destroyed.
The State Fire Marshals Office was on the scene as was the Sheriffs helicopter to help search for suspects, one person was questioned at the scene. The majority of fires attributed to the Little Lake Weir arsonist have been in unoccupied structures.
If you have any information about any of these fires call the State Fire Marshal’s Office at 369 2801 or 369 2864
More information on the Little Lake Weir arsonist can be found at: