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.



Next Up in Crime

‘Free Speech’ rally in Boston draws large crowd of counter-protesters
‘Free Speech’ rally in Boston draws large crowd of counter-protesters

A “free speech” rally in Boston Saturday afternoon drew a large crowd of counter-protesters. An estimated 15,000 counter-protesters marched through the city to Boston Common, where rally attendees gathered to deliver a series of speeches.  The rally ended abruptly, and attendees were escorted by police from the rally area. Tense clashes...
Air Force museum celebrates National Aviation Day with activities
Air Force museum celebrates National Aviation Day with activities

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is hosting educational activities until 3 p.m. today, Aug. 19, as part of its celebration of National Aviation Day. All activities are free and open to the public. During “Family Day,” visitors can learn about major events and breakthroughs in aviation history, from the Wright brothers&rsquo...
Powerball: Dayton area sales brisk for $535 million jackpot
Powerball: Dayton area sales brisk for $535 million jackpot

Powerball ticket sales picked up Saturday as the drawing neared for a $535 million jackpot — the fifth largest ever.  “We’re getting all sorts of new people in,” said Michael Sliger, manager of Bee Gee’s Mini Market in Kettering. “Everybody’s wanting to take a chance at the big money.”  Teresa...
Jacksonville officer in critical condition after shooting 
Jacksonville officer in critical condition after shooting 

One Florida officer is in critical condition and another is stable after being shot Friday, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said. The officers were responding to an attempted suicide call, Sheriff’s Office Director Mike Bruno said. The suspect was shot by police and later died, deputies said. The injured officers were taken to UF Health...
Girl burned with boiling water during sleepover happy to be home
Girl burned with boiling water during sleepover happy to be home

A New York girl who was severely burned after another girl poured boiling water on her face while she was sleeping is making a nice recovery, her mother said Friday. Jamoneisha Merritt told the New York Daily News, “I’m so great,” upon being released from the hospital and returning home. Merritt said she was dancing and listening...
More Stories