AP NEWS

Hermosa Beach police clear suspect of arson

June 15, 2019

HERMOSA BEACH, Calif. (AP) — Southern California police have cleared a man they arrested in connection with a fire that destroyed a beachfront home and damaged four others.

The Los Angeles Times reported Friday that Hermosa Beach police released Michael Christopher Kotva without charges. They said Kotva was not responsible for the fire.

Police said they arrested Kotva Thursday on suspicion of arson based on witness descriptions.

But Sgt. Mick Gaglia said police reviewed surveillance video and recognized the arson suspect as someone else who had previous contacts with Hermosa Beach police. Police arrested the other suspect late Thursday.

Authorities suspect the fire started about 2 a.m. Thursday, turning a residential construction site into an inferno and damaging four nearby homes in the tightly packed neighborhood.

___

Information from: Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com/

All contents © copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.