Reward increased for arson on Atlanta police officer's home

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Law enforcement authorities announced an increased reward Tuesday for information leading to the arrest and indictment of the people responsible for arson attacks on two southwest Atlanta homes, including the home of an Atlanta police officer.

Representatives with the Atlanta Police Department, Atlanta Fire Department, and the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office announced the increased reward of $23,000 at a Tuesday afternoon news conference on Betsy Avenue, where the fires took place.

The first incident happened on Jan. 15, when someone set a home on fire in the 300 block of Betsy Avenue.

The fire at the home of the Atlanta police officer took place on June 26.

In both cases, investigators determined the fires were arson.

Major Michael O’Connor of the Atlanta Police Department’s Major Crimes Section told reporters it’s a serious situation when people are targeted for doing their jobs.

“It’s dangerous enough being an Atlanta police officer that your home should be a sanctuary, and if that’s not going to be the case, we’re going to take a stand to catch the people responsible,” O'Connor said.

Fulton County Deputy District Attorney Cara Convery asked anyone with information about the arsons to come forward, calling the incidents “extremely serious.”

In announcing that the District Attorney’s Office had added $10,000 to the reward, Convery said investigators “have evidence and reason to believe that this is the targeting of an Atlanta police officer.”

"We absolutely take very seriously any threat upon any public safety officer, police or fire,” Atlanta Fire Department Sgt. Cortez Stafford said.

Stafford said $10,000 of the reward comes from the Georgia Arson Control Board.

With both cases unsolved and due to the serious nature of the attacks, including the home of a police officer, authorities increased the reward to $23,000 for anyone who can provide information leading to an arrest and indictment of the people responsible.

Investigators ask anyone with information about these arsons to call Crime Stoppers of Greater Atlanta at 404-577-8477 (TIPS).

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