Arsonist targeting parks in Powell County

STANTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Police are investigating a case of arson at a park that's been set on fire at least twice before.

Firefighters say they had the late night fire under control within minutes of arriving, but thousands of dollars in damage had already been done.

"You would have too have some type of accelerant to actually cause this much fire and it was pretty raging when we got here," said Assistant Chief Michael Sparks with the Stanton Fire Department.

The fire destroyed a slide, melted the plastic off steps and burned the rubber mulch that covers the playground.

"You're looking at probably $17,000 worth of damage at least," Sparks said.

But this isn't the first time they've seen this type of damage, even within the same park. A few weeks ago vandals broke into a building at the park and set a fire that didn't catch. Then a few days later someone burned a porta-potty to the ground. The night after that someone set fire to part of the Clay City park just a few miles away, but it was put out before doing much damage.

Investigators believe all four fires could be related. State Police are assisting with the investigation, they're sending the material they collected from the playground to be tested, to determine if an accelerant was used.
Dispatchers say Stanton's mayor is considering moving the feed from the surveillance cameras at the park to the dispatch center so they can be monitored 24 hours a day.
The city is offering a $500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the people responsible.

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