Rapid City Police and Fire Departments work together to figure out who or what causes suspicious fires

RAPID CITY, S.D. — When the Rapid City Fire Department responds to a fire, the information they gather from the reporting party and from the crews on scene is very important in figuring out who or what started a fire.

Lt. Brian Staton, Fire and Life Safety Division for Rapid City Fire Department said, “Once the fire is put out and the scene is clean, then we will go in. Through training and education we have learned to read burn patterns. And doing so will guide us to typically the origin of the fire and a lot of time, actually, the cause of what started the fire.”

Initial crews on scene will try to determine if a fire is suspicious or not. If a fire is determined to be suspicious in nature, crews may limit how much water is put on the fire in order to preserve evidence.

“We’re able to take photos, look through the scene before they do any of that destructive salvage and overhaul,” said Lt. Staton.

The Rapid City Police Department becomes involved in these investigations anytime there is potential criminal activity. The more people involved in the investigations will make chances of solving the cause of fire that much great.

Brendyn Medina, Community Relations Specialist for the RCPD said, “Essentially what it comes down to is it becomes a force multiplier in the strength that we have in the investigation process. When we come in and we are trying to identify whether or not their is criminal circumstances behind the fire.”

The Rapid City Police Department has a $3,500 reward for information that leads to an arrest for the recent suspicious fires in the Mount Rushmore Road and on Holcomb Avenue.

Categories: Local News