York fire officials say an arsonist caused major damage to a section of W. Philadelphia, downtown. City workers demolished three row-home structures to keep the area safe. Two home consisted of a warehouse that wasn’t in use. One was a vacant home.
York City police arrived on the scene just before 12:40 Thursday morning to follow-up on a report of a burglary. Upon arrival, officers discovered someone broke into 701 W. Philadelphia and the structure was on fire. The fire department fought the fire as police began investigating the incident as arson. Police say Keith Hetrick is now in custody.
Mayor Kim Bracey is addressing why the arson happened in the first place. She says, “My issue is blighted and abandoned properties. It’s my initiative to address more in the city of York and obviously we need to strengthen our efforts.”
Mayor Bracey says abandoned properties gives arsonists a chance to cause damage. York City police are investigating the incident and attempting to identify a second suspect.