General Crime

* Three Palo Alto Teens Arrested in Connection with Hoover Elementary School Arson

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Palo Alto police believe three teenagers who were arrested on suspicion of starting a fire at Hoover Elementary School on Tuesday are also responsible for several other recent arson fires at local schools. Police and firefighters responded to a report of a recycling bin on fire at Hoover, located at 445 E. Charleston Road, at about 9:40 p.m. Firefighters quickly extinguished the blaze. A short time later, a school custodian called 911 after seeing three juveniles running away from the area where the fire had burned. He provided police with a description of the subjects. Officers located the three juveniles and took them into custody. They were later released to their parents. Police believe the suspects, a 15-year-old boy, a 17-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl, are also responsible for three previous school-related fires. One fire occurred Sept. 12 at Jane L. Stanford Middle School, located at 480 East Meadow Drive; a second burned on Sept. 16 at Fair Meadow Elementary School at 500 East Meadow Drive; and the third fire was reported on Sept. 17 at Carmelo Elementary School, at 3024 Bryant St. The Hoover custodian told police that he had been aware of the ongoing arson activity at Palo Alto schools. Police learned that he had moved the burning recycling bin away from school walls before calling police, which may have prevented a greater loss. Police are implementing an “arson suppression plan” enacted earlier this year in response to a series of school-related fires and encourage the community to report suspicious activity. Copyright © 2009 by Bay City News, Inc. — Republication, Rebroadcast or any other Reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.

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