62 year-old man charged with arson in duplex fire

Community Resources Division Commander Barry E. Fox of the St. Augustine Police Department informed local Historic City News reporters that placed a local man under arrest and charged him with Arson this morning when it was determined that he contributed to a fire in the duplex where he was living.

At 8:24 a.m. officers from the St. Augustine Police Department and St. Augustine Fire Department responded to a residential structure fire at 53 B Grant Street.

Upon arrival, officers discovered one of the duplex apartments engulfed in flames.

St. Augustine Fire Department members were able to evacuate all other residents to safety; including a 90 year old woman in one of the units.

The St. Augustine Fire Department was able to quickly contain and extinguish the fire, while officers from the St. Augustine Police Department began interviewing witnesses.

The structure suffered approximately $30,000.00 in damage and no injuries were reported.

Officers contacted 62 year-old resident John M. Fitzgerald, whose hair and beard appeared burnt. Investigators were able to determine that an accelerant was possibly used to start the fire. Fitzgerald was transported to the St. Augustine Police Department for questioning and subsequently was arrested and transported to the St. Johns County Detention Facility.

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