Community meeting held in Bethany Neighborhood to discuss recent - KPTV - FOX 12

Community meeting held in Bethany Neighborhood to discuss recent suspicious fires

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Three suspicious fires that all started within two blocks of each other are sparking a lot of fear in the Bethany Neighborhood.

A community meeting was held Wednesday night where investigators provided a summary of the recent fires and investigation for those living in the Bethany Neighborhood.

Just last week, a home near Northwest Brugger Road and 170th Avenue caught fire. Crews are still investigating but said the fire was suspicious. 

Back in August, two homes caught fire just a few blocks away from the house on NW Brugger Road. Investigators said those fires were intentionally set.

Now, many in the neighborhood are praying another home doesn't go up in flames.

"Last week this happened, it's just a nightmare, worst nightmare. We're all devastated," said Abie who is a Bethany resident.

Abie lives near one of the homes that caught fire, and says she's sick of living in fear.

"Our morning view is the fire, the burned house," said Abie. "We wanted to make sure that our lives are assured. We don't feel safe after the third incident."

All three fires happened in unoccupied homes, under construction by Noyes Development.

Many people showed up to Wednesday's meeting looking for answers.

"We can't give you the guarantee there's not going to be a fourth fire," said a lieutenant with the Washington County Sheriff's Office.

But arson investigators are holding their cards close to their chest.

"We're grateful so many from the community are here tonight, it reinforces what we already knew, that Bethany is a great place to live and people are involved."

Investigators say they're working around the clock and stepping up security, asking for the community to help be their eyes and ears.

Abie says she's already doing just that, because right now, even her kids are scared.

"They can't even sleep in their bedroom all alone, they can't even go to bed on time, they get up in the middle of the night with nightmares," Abie said.

Detectives said they want to be transparent but don't want to hinder the investigation. They were not prepared to release any information on how these fires were started or any suspect information.

Private security is now patrolling the neighborhood.

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