July 16, 2013

Police link Bath man to series of fires, including at a day care

By David Hench dhench@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

Police say a 21-year-old Bath man, charged with setting a pair of dumpsters on fire over the weekend, may be a serial arsonist.

Bath police and firefighters responded Sunday night to a call for a fire in a dumpster at the YMCA. The fires were extinguished quickly. After determining the fire was probably set intentionally, police scoured the area and Officer Ted Raedel located Allan Vigil in some woods nearby.

A short time earlier, a fire also had started in some debris behind the Department of Public Works, police said.

State Fire Marshal’s Investigator Mary MacMaster joined the investigation and after interviewing Vigil at his home he was charged with arson in connection with the dumpster fires.

Police say that Vigil also has been linked to fires at the Family Focus on July 4th and at the Bath Landfill on July 1 but he has only been charged with a single count of arson.

At Family Focus, a day care center, someone broke a window and spread an accelerant inside, said Fire Marshal Joe Thomas. Fortunately, he said, the building was equipped with sprinklers that quickly put out the fire.

The fire at the landfill was worrisome because a propane cylinder had been placed in the blaze, creating the risk of explosion, he said.

“Any fire is dangerous but certainly when we have something going on like this (string of fires) it’s only a matter of time before someone gets hurt or killed,” Thomas said.

Vigil is being held on $20,000 bail at Two Bridges Regional Jail.

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