San Francisco police have arrested a woman suspected of lighting at least two arson fires in the city in the past few months – but not necessarily the car fires or portable toilet arsons that have made headlines.

Fire Lt. Mindy Talmadge said the woman was arrested sometime overnight at the Transbay Terminal at First and Mission streets.

Police and fire officials have not yet released the woman’s name or age but police Sgt. Wilfred Williams said today he believes she is a transient.

Talmadge said the woman is suspected of starting at least two structure fires.

The first happened on April 30 at 100 First St., in the area of the terminal. No injuries were reported and the small blaze caused $500 in damage to the exterior of a building, Talmadge said.

The second happened last Friday on Otis Street and caused about $5,000 in damage, also to the exterior of a building, Talmadge said. No injuries were reported in that case.
Williams said arson investigators had identified the woman as a suspect in those fires. “She was a person that the arson inspectors were already looking for,” he said.

Talmadge said there is no link yet between the woman and the series of arson fires in the last week that destroyed at least 14 cars. She also has not been implicated in a series of 27 portable toilet fires that occurred between November and February.

“She is not a suspect in the recent vehicle fires or the porta-potty fires,” Talmadge said. “However, the arson task force is approaching this by looking for possible connections between her and any unsolved, intentionally set fires in San Francisco.”

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  • Matt Ghali

    Wow, color me impressed! The SFPD is obviously making huge progress in apprehending the person responsible for the huge majority of recent arson cases in the city. Just think, if we saw this sort of progress on the Zodiac killer case, someone guilty of shoplifting would have been swiftly put behind bars. Good going, guys!