Edmonton police seek persons of interest in Callingwood arson cases

Edmonton police badge, September 26, 2010. The Canadian Press Images/Francis Vachon. The Canadian Press Images/Francis Vachon

UPDATE: On July 31, 2017, the Edmonton Police Service said two suspects – including one young offender – had been arrested in connection with the recent string of arsons in Callingwood. Police did not say whether charges were pending but said they expected to release more details on Tuesday.

Edmonton police are asking for help identifying several persons of interest who may be responsible for nine arson incidents throughout the southwest neighbourhood of Callingwood.

The EPS believes the men may have been involved in setting fires to garbage cans, logs and a propane tank in a dog park near 69 Avenue and 172 Street.

Police released photos captured on surveillance video. They said the images show the suspects lighting fires to garbage dumpsters and cans across Callingwood, including behind a condo unit, at a baseball diamond, a dog park and — three times — next to a school near 62 Avenue and 172 Street.

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The executive director of the Talmud Torah Society, which owns the Talmud Torah building and operates a school inside, said over the last 10 days, several fires have been set in garbage bins and dumpsters in the area.

“I’m concerned about the security of our building,” Gerald Sorokin said. “I’m concerned about the security of the children that we serve, the staff that work here, volunteers who are in the facility.”

Sorokin said he is relieved no damage has been done to the building.

“They’re not getting into the building, they’re not able to damage anything other than a garbage can, so it could be a lot worse,” he said.

“We’re going on the presumption that this is just people out there trying to cause mischief.”

READ MORE: Photos released of ‘person of interest’ after Edmonton apartment fire deemed arson 

Detectives started investigating the rash of fires on July 15. The most recent fire was reported at 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 26.

Anyone with information about the suspects or the Callingwood arson is asked to contact the EPS at 780-423-4567 or #377 from a mobile phone. Anonymous information can also be submitted to Crime Stoppers.

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