AZ man's shoe prints lead to his arrest on arson charges
One of the homes Damien Soto is accused of setting on fire. (Source: Pinal County Sheriff''s Office)
CASA GRANDE, AZ (CBS5) -
A Casa Grande man was arrested on arson charges after authorities discovered the shoes he was wearing had the same tread design as those left at the scene of two fires.
Damien Soto, 26, was taken into custody at his sister's home in Coolidge Sunday and was booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on two counts of arson.
Pinal County sheriff's dispatchers received 911 calls Sunday that two homes right next to each other were on fire in the 400 block of North Palomino Lane, outside the city limits of Casa Grande. Both homes were abandoned.
When the first deputy arrived on scene, he said he saw two men arguing in the roadway in front of the two burning homes, PCSO said.
One of the men was accusing Soto of starting the fire, sheriff's investigators said.
"At this point, the deputy did not know if anybody was still inside of the residences so he told both individuals to stand by his patrol vehicle while he went and checked," said Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu.
Babeu said after the deputy confirmed nobody was inside either of the homes, he saw that Soto had left the scene.
The deputy took photographs of the shoe prints left between the two homes which had been on fire.
Other witnesses also saw Soto walking away from the homes after the fire was started.
Witnesses said Soto was extremely intoxicated and had been also sniffing gasoline from a rag before the fires were started, PCSO added.
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