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Suspect sought after fire destroys tent in central Hamilton encampment

Police say they are seeking a suspect connected with a blaze that destroyed a tent in a Hamilton neighbourhood June 19, 2024. It's believed the man involved was operating a black GMC pickup. Hamilton Police Service

Police say they are seeking a suspect connected with a ‘targeted’ blaze that destroyed a tent in a Hamilton encampment.

Investigators allege a man in his 30s poured liquid from a yellow jerrycan onto a tent in a “grassy area” at the northwest corner of Wellington Street North and Simcoe Street just after 8 p.m. Wednesday.

After igniting it, he reportedly fled the scene in a GMC truck.

“Hamilton Fire responded and extinguished the fire, but the tent and all its contents were destroyed,” Const. Indy Bharaj said.

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“Fortunately, no one was inside at the time of the fire.”

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Bharaj says the man had short blond hair, was wearing a T-shirt and black jogger pants.

Detectives confirmed the attack was “targeted against an individual” and not “an anti-encampment” action.

They also said the black extended cab GMC Sierra the suspect was driving was stolen. It has since been recovered.

Police are also seeking to identify the owner of the tent.

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