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Suspected vehicle arson engulfs a van in Calexico

August 28, 2001|By MARIO RENTERÍA, Staff Writer

CALEXICO — A suspected vehicle arson in the 400 block of Paulin Avenue this morning is under investigation by the city's Fire Department.

The Fire Department received a call about 2:51 a.m. regarding a van that was on fire.

Calexico police Sgt. Jim Neujahr said a police officer arrived at the van fire before fire crews.

When the officer arrived only the front seat was on fire. He tried to extinguish the blaze with a fire extinguisher but the fire quickly engulfed the vehicle.

A fire investigator said the officer told firefighters he noticed the van's door was open when he arrived. Fire investigators also said there were several matches underneath the car, so they have reason to think it could be an arson.

Neujahr said the van belongs to a person from San Bernardino. Neujahr said investigators don't think the van was stolen, although it previously was stolen in a separate incident.

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Staff Writer Mario Rentería can be reached at 337-3435.

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