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Parolee Arrested for Setting Two Vehicles on Fire in Santa Monica

Bob Kronovetrealty
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By Jorge Casuso

February 24, 2021 -- A Los Angeles parolee was arrested for setting two vehicles on fire near Santa Monica Airport Tuesday afternoon, police said.

Alex Omar Aguirre, a 28-year-old Hispanic male, was caught in the act by officers responding to a call for service at 2:15 p.m. in the area of 23rd and Dewey Street from the owner of one of the vehicles, according to police.

Arson Suspect Alex Aguirre

"Details of the call indicated the male was attempting to light an item stuffed in the gas tank of the reporting party’s vehicle," said Lt. Rudy Flores.

The victim directed the responding officers to Aguirre, who they saw "leaning into the car window of a separate vehicle, rummaging through the contents of that car," he said.

The officers noticed smoke coming from the car and immediately called the Santa Monica Fire Department, Flores said.

"Officers detained Aguirre and spoke with the victim to ascertain the details of this incident, while Fire personnel extinguished the burning vehicle," he said.

The victim told police he saw Aguirre "trying to pick the lock of his vehicle before he confronted him."

He also noticed there was "a burning rag stuffed into the filler of the gas tank" and was able to extinguish the fire before calling 9-1-1, Flores said.

Burnt vehicle
Pictures courtesy of SMPD.

Aguirre attempted to flee but appeared to have trouble starting the vehicle he eventually ignited, according to the victim.

Aguirre exited the vehicle and was detained by officers, Flores said.

He was placed under arrest and taken to the Santa Monica Police department, "where officers discovered he was on parole,"

They also learned the second vehicle Aguirre set on fire was an unreported stolen car from Los Angeles, Flores said.

Aguirre was booked for attempted burglary, arson, grand theft auto and violating parole.

Anyone with any information related to the incident should call Detective David Chabot from SMPD's Criminal Investigations Division at (310) 458-6679 or the Watch Commander (24 hours) at 310-458-8427.

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