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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

June 28, 2012

Contact: Special Agent Christian Hoffman, PIO

Office: (818) 265-2507

Cell: (213) 216-3622

Contact: Helen Dunkel, Special Agent, PIO

Office: (925) 557-2815

Cell: (925) 202-8135

Construction Site Fire Ruled Arson

Oakland, Calif. — Fire investigators from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), National Response Team along with the Oakland Fire Department, the Alameda County arson task force and the Oakland Police Department (OPD) announced today that the June 14 fire at the Red Star Senior Apartment construction site was an act of arson. The incendiary blaze caused at least $25 million dollars of damage. While there is sufficient physical evidence to support this determination, the specific details of the evidence will not be released while the investigation continues.

Although the fire scene is wrapping up, there is still a lot of investigative work to be done on this senseless act of violence, said Jeffery Vind acting ATF Special Agent in Charge of the San Francisco Field Division. We are committed to working this investigation with our fire and law enforcement partners to ensure the public’s safety while trying to determine who is responsible for setting the fire.

The ATF National Response Team (NRT) comprised of special agents from across the country, responded to the scene to work alongside local fire and police investigators. The NRT includes a canine team, forensic chemists, origin and cause specialists, fire engineers, and additional specialized personnel. This was the ninth activation of Fiscal Year 2012 and the 730th activation since the inception of the team in 1978.

ATF is the federal agency with jurisdiction for investigating fires and crimes of arson. More information on ATF can be found at