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Hollywood arson spree: Extra firefighters to be on duty overnight

December 30, 2011 |  2:17 pm

Officials plan to increase the number of deputies and firefighters on duty Friday night, after a rash of early-morning arson fires in West Hollywood and Hollywood
Officials plan to increase the number of deputies and firefighters on duty Friday night, after a rash of early-morning arson fires in West Hollywood and Hollywood.

Several agencies, including the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and the Los Angeles County Fire Department, plan to bring in additional firefighters and officers starting Friday evening and throughout the day Saturday due to the fires and the New Year's holiday.

"We're going to be out there trying to catch who did this," said Lt. LaJuana Haselrig of the Sheriff's Department. She said residents are advised to be on alert.

Friday's fires began shortly after midnight, when callers flooded authorities with reports of burning vehicles. In total, there were four deliberately set fires in West Hollywood and 15 in Hollywood. Most of the fires were started in cars parked in underground garages or carports attached to apartment buildings, officials said.

Nobody was injured in the fires, but one blaze forced the evacuation of 50 residents from their apartments. 

In the five West Hollywood fires, officials estimated the cost of the damage at about $350,000. Ten vehicles damaged or destroyed in the fires were valued at about $185,000, and four buildings sustained $150,000 in damage. There was an additional $15,000 in damage to personal property, officials said.

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-- Angel Jennings

Photo: Firefighter Dane Jackson looks over the scene near 2000 N. Laurel Canyon Drive in Hollywood after a suspected arson car fire ignited a nearby house. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

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