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Kids suspected in suspicious fires

Summer has officially begun and so have a series of suspicious fires in the Spokane Valley area.

“Schools out and the kids are starting to play already,” said Spokane Valley Fire Department Assistant Fire Marshal Bill Clifford. “Matches and lighters are tools and not toys.”

The first fire was reported at Pavillion Park in Liberty Lake the evening of June 20. A young boy came out of the bathroom and reported that a toilet was on fire. Firefighters did find flames coming from the toilet, Clifford said. “The people who were around there didn’t see anyone running out of there,” he said.

A Dumpster fire was reported at 23515 E. Boone just before 9:30 p.m. on June 22. Someone reported that they saw a person running to a waiting vehicle. A small fire was set near the Central Valley High School tennis courts at 5 p.m. on June 24. It caused $800 in damage to a fence and some bushes. “Somebody saw a couple of kids running away from the fire,” Clifford said.

A small grass fire was reported at the corner of Liberty Lake Road and Sprague Avenue the afternoon of June 25. Once again children were seen leaving the area, Clifford said.

Other calls from June 19-25

June 23: A small fire in landscaping bark was reported at 15615 E. Broadway just before 1:30 p.m.

June 24: Firefighters responded to the 17900 block of East Appleway to treat a woman who jumped from a moving car driven by a man who was fleeing police.

June 25: A car hit a person in a wheelchair at 13212 E. Indiana just before 4:30 p.m. The person received minor injuries and the wheelchair was damaged. Crews responded to the 11900 block of East Broadway to assist a 9-year-old boy who climbed a tree to help a cat and got stuck. Firefighters put up a ladder so the boy could climb down.

By the numbers: Crews responded to 244 calls from June 19-25, including 183 emergency medical services calls. The calls included three illegal yard waste fires, two downed power lines, 19 car accidents and one child accidentally locked inside a car.