SOAP LAKE - Two arson suspects have been arrested after iFIBER ONE News aired last week’s story about a recent rash of fires throughout the countryside near Soap Lake. The Grant County Sheriff’s office announced the arrests on Thursday.
21-year-old Alexandra Gray of Ephrata was arrested on suspicion of four counts of 2nd degree arson and four counts of second degree burglary. A 17-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of five counts of second degree arson and five counts of second degree burglary. Grant County Fire District 7 alerted the sheriff’s office and the Grant County Fire Marshall’s office starting in early April to a series of suspicious fires which burned old homestead structures near the 27000 block of Road A-Northeast and the 1600 block of Road 27-Northeast.
Sheriff’s officials say evidence, surveillance footage and tips from citizens helped tie the suspects to the fires. Additional arrests are pending.
The nine suspected arson fires spanned from April 10 to May 28. As many as seven abandoned buildings burned in the fires. Sheriff’s officials say buildings that burned included farm buildings and old homes. All fires appear to have been crimes of opportunity.
“There was a great amount of time spent on this investigation due to the concern that the fire setters might evolve to igniting occupied buildings,” said Sheriff Tom Jones. “The cooperation between investigators and the public helped close this case before anybody was hurt, including the suspects.”
The probe continues into a number of unsolved hay and straw stack fires in the Soap Lake area. Anyone with information is asked to call the Grant County Sheriff’s Office at 509-762-1160 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Tipsters can remain anonymous.