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Suspected arson destroys tree service’s trucks


The owner of a tree service is without three of his service trucks after they were destroyed by fire early Friday, but he says he’s not been knocked out of business.

Joel Breslin, 30, said he was still in business when asked Friday evening how the incident has affected him, but he declined to say much else.

Springfield police, meantime, were not able to file any charges because they have no witnesses and thus, no suspects.

According to the police division, in a report filed Friday, police and fire crews were dispatched to a residence in the 700 block of Farlow Street sometime after 5 a.m. on a report of a fire involving three vehicles.

Officers said they observed three trucks on fire on the east side of the street.

Breslin told police the black 2004 Ford F150 pickup, blue 1999 GMC HDT pickup and silver 2001 Dodge Ram pickup belonged to J&R Tree Service and that they were used for his company.

Breslin told police he jumped out of bed and ran outside with his fire extinguisher after a phone call from a neighbor at about 4 a.m. that his house was on fire. Breslin said when he realized the trucks were burning and not his house, he called 911.

He answered “no” when police officers asked whether he was having issues with anyone, according to the report.

Officer Meredith Freeman did speak with neighbors, who said they saw a newer model black four-door vehicle being driven slowly around the trucks earlier in the night. But those neighbors were unable to give a license tag number or any description of the driver, according to the police report.

The neighbor who alerted Breslin told police she was awakened by the sound of vehicle alarms and thought Breslin’s house was burning when she looked from her bedroom window and saw smoke.

According to police, the incident is being investigated as an arson or attempted arson.



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