Long story short, I'm pulling an all-nighter on a work project, so just before I go to bed to get a few hours sleep , I go to my living room window to smoke a cigarette (so the smoke can go outside, not in my apartment) and I hear then see this guy below me running away in a very suspicious manner, it's like 6:OO AM in the morning, so I'm like, what the hell was that? Do I call 911 to report a suspicious man running away or not? This is LA and that kind of suspicious activity call ain't exactly gonna send the cavalry charging or anything, and then I think about the car fire we had a few months ago that happened at about the same hour in the building next to mine, and also my building manager telling me at the time that the neighbohood had a rash of car fires for some time now, and as I'm putting 2 and 2 together, I smell smoke, and start hearing a commotion, and the direction the guy was running from was where the fire was. Fortunately, unlike the last fire which was real serious, this one got put out quick, before the firemen even showed.
So I'm like, "I saw the creep" and glad because this guy needs to get caught. So I tell the firemen and they tell me to wait, so on the chance this guy likes to watch the firemen work, I walk around looking for the guy, but no luck.
Finally, the top fire guy calls me over, takes ny name and #, and asks how I saw the guy, so I tell him, and then he asks if I saw him set the fire, and I say no, and then he's like "well there ain't much we can do then" and he walks off and I haven't even had the chance to describe the guy... Well it's been three days now, and nobody from the arson squad or anything has contacted me....
So I'm starting to get pissed now, I start doing research on serial arsonist, and as it turns out, like 87% have a felony record and live near where they set the fires, so I'm thinking, with my description and the likelyhood this guy already has a sheet, this might be the big break to solve this case. IF I can ID the guy from local felons, and I got a REAL GOOD look at the guy, they can question him and tell them there's a witness who knew what he was wearing and can describe in detail the odd way he fled the scene. I say odd because he didn't take the fastest way out to the street, he ran a longer way to exit the area in a more closed off, rarely used exit.
This might be enough to get a confession even though I "didn't see him set the fire"....
But so far nothing.... I'll give them a few more days to contact me, but this creep has to get caught. Besides the property damage, he could get somebody killed some day. That fire a few months ago was bad. Took out three cars, did building damage, if one of those gas tanks blew, the tenants trying to put it out could've been killed.
Plus this last fire he set this week was about 20 feet below the bed I sleep in, I take that kind of thing personally. I'm not going to be ignored without a fight on this one. I'm just a regular guy, but if I Can get the nearby apartment owners in on this, I might be able to rattle some cages at city hall and get the arson people to allow me to at least describe the guy to them.