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Parkersburg fires could be linked to homeless confrontations

One theory is that fires are being set as a part of “turf wars”
Published: Nov. 18, 2020 at 9:39 PM EST
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) -

An increasing amount of abandoned or vacant properties in Parkersburg have caught fire in recent months.

Parkersburg Police are investigating the fires and one scenario they are exploring is confrontations between groups of homeless people.

Parkersburg Police Chief Joe Martin says he has heard of multiple instances of arguments between groups about who claims the vacant houses, and shortly after the house is burning, however, he adds that arson is one of the hardest crimes to prove.

Police are currently looking for one suspect who has a criminal warrant for arson, and could possibly be linked to more than one of the incidents.

Martin added that the landowners and neighbors can help by taking responsibility of their abandoned properties or give police information about activity around the homes.

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