Suspected arsonist strikes Portland-area mayor’s home, allegedly sets fire outside garage, flees scene

The police are investigating a case of suspected arson that took place outside the garage of Vancouver Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle’s home Monday evening while she was attending a City Council meeting.

(Video Credit: KGW News)

Vancouver, Washington is part of the Portland, Oregon metro area. The city has a population of 191,000 people and is located nine miles north of Portland’s city center.

The mayor’s husband, Terry Ogle, was the one who caught the suspect reportedly lighting the fire outside of the mayor’s garage and confronted him. The person ran away and Ogle put the fire out himself before the police arrived two minutes later in the Shumway neighborhood north of downtown. The home is reportedly located in the 3500 block of F Street. No one was injured in the altercation and there was only minor damage to the garage.

A Columbian reporter who was at the scene reportedly saw yellow tape and a deputy fire marshal examining the north side of the two story-garage, which contains an apartment. It is unknown if that fact is relevant to the event.

The suspect is still at large, according to Fox News. Officers set up a containment and are using K9s in the search for the person who fled on foot. The police announced that the suspect is male and is about 5 feet 10 inches tall.

Vancouver police report that officers responded at approximately 9:37 p.m. on Monday to the incoming report of arson in progress at an area residence, according to a brief press release.

“The homeowner confronted an individual who was setting a fire near the garage of the home and the suspect fled on foot,” police told the public. “The homeowner was able to extinguish the fire. Vancouver Police set up containment and conducted a K9 track. The suspect was not located.”

Vancouver Police Department arson investigators and the Vancouver Fire Marshal’s Office are conducting an ongoing investigation into the incident. Information is extremely limited and authorities are playing it close to the vest on this one due to its high-profile nature.

FOX 12 interviewed McEnerny-Ogle on Tuesday morning. She claims this is not the first time their home has been hit by crime.

“We had had a burglary the night before. Smashed the back door, just totaled it out, and this person spent some time in our home,” she told reporters. “We have been caring for my brother who’s in hospice, and so we took the night off to do night duty with Patrick and came home to that.”

It is unknown at this time if this was a politically-motivated attack but the mayor has categorically stated she believes it is.

“Every elected has threats. Some of our City Counselors have had threats. Whatever decision they make upsets at least one person. So every single counselor, I’m sure, has had a threat of some sort,” the mayor remarked.

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