Police release video of woman they believe attempted to set two Alameda County preschools on fire

- Authorities have released video of a woman they believe attempted to set fire to two Safari Kid preschool/daycares. One is located in Newark, the other in Union City. Both incidents happened on holiday weekends when no people were present. 

Monisha Pandit, the head of operations for Safari Kid says, "We've seen the video a few times but unfortunately we have not been able to identify who that individual is."
 
The first attack happened Thanksgiving weekend. The video shows the woman as she attempted to light a Molotov cocktail, unsuccessfully, then resorted to smashing the school's glass door with the bottle.

The second incident happened Memorial Day weekend, where someone struck the Safari Kid location in Newark, and this time fire caused serious damage.

Captain Chomnan Loth of Newark Police says, "Arson is a very serious crime and it is affecting a lot of families. And we take this case very seriously. And it's actually one of our top priority cases right now."

Safari Kid has preschool and daycare locations around the Bay Area.  And administrators say they've been working closely with police. They've also stepped up their security with cameras, keypads and motions sensors. They say it's important for parents to feel their kids are safe.

Pandit says, "From day one, when the incident happened, there was absolute transparent email communication that went out from our proactive marketing team. We have met and spoken with parents one to one."

They've also been helping families move their kids to other Safari Kid locations while fire damage at the Newark facility is repaired.

Police believe the same woman is likely responsible for both attacks. Now they've released the video in the hopes someone will recognize her and turn her in.

Captain Loth says, "We believe that her intention is to damage the school, not to hurt anybody. But again, that's not a guarantee, because for whatever reason she has this grudge against the school. We want to make sure we stop her before she acts again."

Safari kid hopes to have their Newark facility reopened by July 1st. 

Anyone with information on the case can contact Det. Warren of Newark Police at 510-578-4960 or email him at Matt.Warren@newark.org.
 

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