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California arson suspect sought after spilling, igniting the fuel at a gas station, officials say

connectVideoAuthorities search for California arson suspect after he ignites fuel at gas station

The authorities in California ask the public for help after a man in a gas station on Saturday and bought a gallon of gas to spill in the vicinity of a pump and lighting it on fire.

The Sacramento Metropolitan Fire department said on Twitter the incident happened at the Unocal 76 gas station on Watt Avenue in Sacramento on Saturday morning.

Surveillance images released by fire officials show the man entering the store wearing a pair of sunglasses before returning to the pump outside.

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Marichal Brown, who was working at the cash register at the time, told FOX40 he looked up and saw a “great fire.”

“He spilled gasoline on the ground on purpose, then put the nozzle and lit a match and put it on the fire, when a man pulled up to pump gas,” he said.

A man bought a gallon of gas to spill in the vicinity of a pump and lighting on fire at a gas station in Sacramento, California. on Saturday, according to officials.
(Metro Fire Sacramento)

Brown told FOX40 the petrol station was almost full at the moment, and he knew that customers were in danger.

“I was afraid that the activation of the pump to explode. Once we got everyone to safety, I ran back and grabbed the fire extinguisher,” he said.

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Brown was able to put the fire out before the fire brigade on the scene. The man fled the gas station on foot in the area.

Metro Fire Capt. Chris Vestal said his crews are now working to find the man, before he puts everyone in danger.

“We don’t know what the danger is, because we don’t know who he is, we don’t know his motive, and we don’t know what his intentions were,” Vestal told FOX40. “We really need help in identifying him and finding him to be sure that there is no danger to the community and to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.”

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Anyone who is able to identify the man in the photos released by fire officials is urged to contact the Metro Fire arson tip line at 916-859-3775.

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