Police investigate suspicious car fires in Summit

Above: A screenshot from an Albany News 10 report about the suspicious fires in Summit. 

A multi-agency investigation is underway following a string of suspicious car fires in the Schoharie County town of Summit.

Schoharie County Fire Coordinator Matt Brisley said that that five vehicles and a garage have been damaged or destroyed on Baldwin Rd. over the past 10 days.

"All five vehicles that have been damaged or destroyed by fire were incendiary in nature and began within a quarter-mile radius of each other at around the same time," Brisley said.

Brisley explained that the first car fire occurred around 2 a.m. on Saturday, July 2. Two more vehicles and a garage were set aflame around 1:45 a.m. on Tuesday, July 5, he said, and then two more cars were set on fire at 2:15 a.m. on Monday, July 11.

"We have collected evidence and have submitted it to the forensic lab for analysis," Brisley said.

Brisley said that his office is working in conjunction with the Summit Fire Department, the New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control, the Schoharie County Sheriff's Office, the New York State Police and Schoharie County District Attorney Jim Sacket to coordinate their efforts in investigating the fires.

People on edge

Residents are on edge in the usually sleepy mountaintop town, the Mountain Eagle newspaper reported on Monday. Summit Fire Chief Don Clarke urged Summit residents to keep their outside lights on and to use trail cameras, according to the story.

Clarke further told the newspaper that some people are sleeping in shifts to make sure someone in the home is awake at all times.

The Watershed Post reached out to victims of the arson attacks, but they declined to comment at the request of local law enforcement.