Contra Costa Co.: Arson suspected in series of fires along Iron Horse Trail

- Contra Costa County Fire Protection District investigators say it appears a string of fires along the popular Iron Horse Trail and Monument Trail pedestrian and bike paths appear to be arson.

Arson investigator Captain George Laing says the series of fires started several months ago along the Iron Horse Trail in Concord and adjacent Pleasant Hill.

The most recent happened Tuesday night.

"Yesterday right here," said one resident Griselda Ramirez, who says she has noticed more burnt patches on her daily walks. "Every day, I'm walking."

"We've had four along our fence line here and we're just concerned as a community," said another resident Gary Walters.

He and other neighbors showed KTVU a photo taken in July by resident Jean Davis which shows flames engulfing a tree near their homes.

Neighbors say they've heard of as many as 33 fires up and down the trail.

Contra Costa County fire investigators say they do not want to disclose details of their investigation, but all signs point to arson.

"The fires have occurred at all times of day and night and that's especially concerning to the fire district,"  said Fire Captain George Laing, "These are the kinds of critical conditions where any, any incidence of fire especially in these narrow walking areas with vegetation and homes could get out of hand quickly."

Concord resident Ray Shephard and his fiancee showed us photos of their car which they say was destroyed in a fire Sunday at an apartment complex on Lisa Lane right next to the trail and Fair Oaks Elementary School.

Fire officials say so far, no one has been injured, but the fires have damaged property and some structures.

They want people to be on the watch and call 911 or the Contra Costa Fire arson tipline at 1-866-50-ARSON if they see anything suspicious.

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