Arsonist targets parole office

BREMERTON -- A serial arsonist has struck a Department of Corrections satellite facility five times since 2007.

Bremerton police officials say the parole office located in the 5000 block of Kitsap Way has been hit five times by fires that were intentionally set. The last three times occurred in August 2013, November 2013 and January 2014. Officials said the costs of the fires have exceeded $100,000, and each fire seems to increase in severity.

The building is where convicted criminals go to check in on their parole. Bremerton Police Chief Steve Strachan doesn't think that's a coincidence.

"So, needless to say, the obvious answer is this is probably someone who's under supervision with the DOC," Strachan said. "We've been looking into that, but the fact is this person is escalating, the arson fires are getting worse and worse, and this is a very, very serious crime."

And it's just not the DOC facility at risk, officials said.

"It's right next to a motel, which, again, makes it much more serious because you have people at risk who are there overnight," Strachan said. "The fact is, the fire department has gotten there very quickly to put it out, but the fires have been getting more and more serious over the last few months, and again, it points to the reason we need to get this person stopped. The fact is somebody knows who's doing this."

Anyone with information on the case is encouraged to call Bremerton detectives at 360-473-5528 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS. There is a $1,000 reward with information leading to the capture and prosecution of the arsonist.