Arson suspected in 4 separate Buechel fires


by Bethanni Williams

Posted on April 30, 2013 at 8:39 AM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 30 at 2:26 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS 11) -- Investigators are looking for an arsonist who they said set four different fires in a Buechel neighborhood early Tuesday morning.

“It is terrible, it is nerve racking,” resident Ann O’Leary said. “I do not know what is going on. Yet, it is so early and we cannot get back in the house. We will have to see what happens.”

O’Leary and her elderly mother were in their home on Rosemont Boulevard when they woke up around 5 a.m. to their house on fire.

The fire was contained to the carport of O’Leary’s home, but while fire crews were fighting the blaze at her home, three more fire calls came in - all within blocks of the first fire. Apparently, an arsonist set fire to a lawn mower, a bike,  a mattress and debris in the backyard of another home.
For the most part, no major structural damage done except to O’Leary’s home.

The Buechel fire chief said they have seen a problem with arson in the past.

“Over the last year we have had a number of set fires,” Chief Rick Harrison said. “We do not know if they are all linked, but we are definitely going to investigate that.”

O’Leary, her mother and two cats were able to get out of the house because she said their neighbor knocked on their door to alert them of the fire outside.

“I just thank God for our neighbor to wake us up,” O’Leary said. “Even though our alarm went off right afterwards, [our neighbors] gave us those extra minutes to get out of the house.”

O’Leary said she will be staying at a hotel for several nights while restoration is being done.  Her mother was taken to the hospital because she has a heart problem, but she is in stable condition and is expected to be OK.

A $1,000 reward is being offered leading up to the arrest of the person or persons responsible for the fires.