HOLLISTER—The Hollister Police Department has arrested 33-year-old Hollister resident Jason Wayne Spears on charges of arson. Investigators have not decided if Spears had any involvement in the recent string of arsons that have occurred in Hollister since November.
In the early morning hours of February 9, an eye witness called the police after he saw Spears attempt to set fire to a condominium. The witness detained Spears as he waited for police.
Officer Chris Wells of the Hollister Police Department and Captain Mike O’Conner of the Hollister Fire Department responded to the scene. Their preliminary investigation found several sites where Spears had attempted to set fire to the condominium units where he lived. However, no serious damage was found to the condominiums.
“When we got there they showed us where he tried starting the fires with a lighter,” Hollister Police Chief Carlos Reynoso said. “He did not have prior vendettas with anyone in the condominium complex.”
Reynoso also added, “It seems that he may just like to see things burn, and that is very dangerous.”
Spears was arrested on five charges of arson to an inhabited structure and/or property. Officer Wells recalled that earlier that morning he was called to the scene of a similar arson case, where an exterior wall, interior curtains and light fixture were among the objects damaged.
Evidence from that fire was found on Spears at the time of his arrest. Investigators with both the Police and Fire Departments executed a search warrant at his residence on the 1300 block of Versailles and found additional evidence related to arson crimes. “When we searched his home we found other evidence that pertain to arson like some high intensity butane lighters,” said Reynoso.
Police are also investigating whether Spears had any involvement in the recent incidents that occurred in Hollister since November 14, when a medical office building caught on fire in the early morning hours and was completely destroyed.
The Hollister Police Department would like to thank the citizens that took time to get involved. This is another example of citizens trying to make their communities a safer place to live.
Anyone with information regarding these cases is requested to contact the Hollister Police Department at 831-636-4330. Person wishing to remain anonymous may call WeTip at 800-78-CRIME. Information provided to WeTip may qualify for a reward.
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