66 arsons since Nov. in Accomack County

March 14, 2013 at 3:42 PM
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WHITE STONE, Va., March 14 (UPI) -- A fire this week at a rundown motel in eastern Virginia was the 66th case of arson in Accomack County since November, authorities said.

The Tuesday night fire that destroyed the Whispering Pines Motel in White Stone -- east of Richmond, near Virginia's eastern shore along the Chesapeake Bay -- was the second arson in the region this week, the (Hampton Roads, Va.) Daily Press reported.

A fire was reported Monday at an abandoned building in Oak Hall.

Charlie Russell, whose family built the motel in 1932 and sold it in 1972, told WAVY-TV, Portsmouth, Va., he thinks whoever is setting the fires "has a grudge against the county."

"Someone thinks he's been treated unfair, and he is seeking revenge," Russell said.

Tasley (Va.) Fire Company Chief Jeff Beal said the string of arsons has disrupted the lives of volunteer firefighters, telling WMDT-TV, Salisbury, Md., "we all have jobs, we all have families, and we all have lives. This has cut into everything."

Officials said a $25,000 is being offered for a tip that leads to an arrest and conviction.

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