Serial Arsonist Suspected as 17 Arson Fires Hit Hollywood

PHOTO: Authorities are asking members of the public to step forward with information after a string of 19 arsons in West Hollywood and Hollywood damaged buildings and cars throughout the area.
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Investigators believe a string of at least 17 arson fires in Hollywood today, mostly starting in cars, was the work of a serial arsonist, law-enforcement sources told ABC News.

No serious injuries have been reported, although a firefighter suffered minor injuries. The former home of the late rock star Jim Morrison in Laurel Canyon was one of the properties that was damaged, the Associated Press reported.

Investigators are reviewing surveillance tapes in their search for the arsonist. Nearly all the fires started in cars -- most parked in carports in buildings with no security gates. They hit Hollywood and West Hollywood and disrupted power in several neighborhoods.

"It was a long, tough night," Los Angeles County Battalion Chief Tom Sullivan told the AP.

The fires began at 1 a.m. and blazed for about four hours. One caused extensive damage to a building on North Cahuenga Boulevard. Three vehicles were burned out and the fire spread from the carport to the apartment above, fire officials said at a news conference, according to ABC affiliate KABC in Los Angeles.

Sandy Gendel, who owns a restaurant near the former Morrison home -- the inspiration for the Doors' song "Love Street" -- told the AP he saw flames 30 feet high from the house and a Mazda Miata.

Dozens of residents had to flee their homes. "I woke up really scared. I heard somebody saying, 'Fire, fire,'" Daniel Meza of Hollywood told KABC.

The Los Angeles Fire Department went on tactical alert while authorities hunted for the arsonist, allowing officials to pull in resources from other areas to help fight the fires.

It was not clear whether the incidents today were related to three arson fires that struck Hollywood Thursday. Samuel Arrington, 22, and a second suspect were arrested in connection with those incidents.

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