Police searching for Molotov cocktail wielding arsonist

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PEORIA, Ariz. -- Police in Peoria are turning to the public to help find the person or people who lobbed a Molotov cocktail into a bedroom where three young boys were sleeping on Christmas Eve.

It happened just before 5 a.m. at a home in the neighborhood southeast of 75th and Peoria avenues.

According to Peoria police, the suspect or suspects threw a burning container filled with flammable liquid through the window of a bedroom. Three boys ranging in age from 5 to 11 were asleep, their beds near that window.

The boys' 44-year-old mother and 63-year-old grandmother were both home at the time. A family friend, a 56-year-old man, was there, as well. Together, the adults were able to quickly extinguish the flames. The fire was out by the time firefighters and police officers got to the house.

Molotov cocktails are designed to splash flammable liquid over wide area, causing flames to spread extremely fast. Luckily, that did not happened.

Although there was some damage to the home, nobody was injured.

"These boys are very lucky," said Jay Davies of the Peoria Police Department.

Police are investigating the case as an arson.

If you have any information about who might be responsible, Peoria police would like to hear from you.

"Maybe the person who did this bragged about it. Maybe somebody overheard something. Maybe somebody in the are heard or saw a suspicious vehicle," Davies said.

There are several ways to contact the police, including some options that allow you to remain anonymous.

You can text 274637 (CRIMES). Be sure to start your message with PPD. You also can email PDTips@peoriaaz.gov or call the tip line at 623-773-7045.

If you would prefer to remain anonymous, visit PeoriaAZ.gov/police and click the "TipSoft" link. You also can call Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS (948-6377), 1-800-343-TIPS (8477) or 480-TESTIGO (837-8446).