Arson investigators searched through the burned out remains of Pleasant Hill salon early Monday, looking for further evidence that the one-alarm fire that damaged the building was intentionally set, authorities said.
Contra Costa County Fire arson investigator Vic Massenkoff said the search was underway for other evidence of a firebomb. An unexploded Molotov Cocktail was found outside the salon by fire crews.
“Once we determine where the fire started, then that’s when we get down on our hands and knees and sift through all the fire debris,” he told KTVU.
What investigators are looking for is curved pieces of glass.
“If you are looking at an incident where an incendiary device like a Molotov Cocktail has been used, those are constructed with glass bottles,” he said. “So you are looking for curved glass that can be differentiated from window glass."
The front window of the business was broken out when the first crews arrived.
A bottle found outside the salon will be checked for fingerprints and all of the employees will be interviewed.
Fire crews were called around 11:15 p.m. to reports of a blaze at the Magic Touch Salon in a shopping center in the 500 block of Contra Costa Boulevard in Pleasant Hill.
The fire, which caused $100,000 in damages, was knocked down in about 20 minutes, and no injuries were reported, but the salon was completely gutted.
Maria Mendoza, who owns the salon, said she did not know why someone would intentionally set fire to the business.
“They said it was intentional since they found a cocktail bomb,” she said. “Nothing in there is gone. Nothing is missing. I guess they just wanted to burn it all. I have no idea who could have done this.”
The salon will stay closed for some time, but Mendoza said her business is insured and she plans to reopen.
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