Third 14-year-old arrested in string of arsons including fire that gutted Dogz Bar and Grill, LBFD says

The blaze at Dogz Bar and Grill on Second Street did more than $150,000 in damage, fire officials said. Photo courtesy the LBFD.

A third 14-year-old boy was arrested Tuesday in connection with a string of arsons last week around Belmont Shore and Naples Island, Long Beach fire officials announced Wednesday.

Investigators have linked the boys to five separate blazes including one that injured a firefighter as it tore through Dogz Bar and Grill on Second Street, the Long Beach Fire Department said in a news release.

“The five fires that the three suspects were charged with include: three trash fires with one fire that damaged a fence, one palm tree fire, and the fire at Dogz Bar and Grill where conservative damage estimates are at $160,000,” LBFD spokesman Jake Heflin said in the release.

All of the fires were set between June 12 and June 16, authorities said.

Other than the flames at Dogz, which erupted into a three-alarm blaze on June 12, all of them were small, according to the LBFD. One firefighter ended up with second-degree burns on both of his hands from battling the blaze at Dogz, Heflin said.

The third arrest comes three days after authorities took the first two 14-year-old into custody on suspicion of setting at least one blaze, according to the LBFD.

Originally, fire officials said they’d arrested the two boys on Saturday after linking them to a sixth blaze at Naples Elementary School where some trash was set afire. On Wednesday, however, authorities backtracked, saying they were still investigating whether the boys are connected to that fire.

All three 14-year-olds are locals, Heflin said. Two are from Naples Island, and the third is from East Long Beach, according to the LBFD.

Heflin asked anyone with information about the fires to contact investigators at 562-570-2582.

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Jeremiah Dobruck is managing editor for the Long Beach Post. He began his journalism career in 2007 as an intern at Palos Verdes Peninsula News and has worked for The Forum Newsgroup in New York City, the Daily Pilot and the Press-Telegram.
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