Man wanted, accused of igniting molotov cocktail at Clarkston home, officials sayPhoto provided by Atlanta News First
By Zac Summers and Atlanta News First staff
CLARKSTON, Ga. (Atlanta News First) – An unidentified man is wanted in connection to an arson incident after a woman’s Clarkston home caught fire from a molotov cocktail, according to the DeKalb County Fire Rescue Department.
Monique Cole has never been more grateful for her two dogs than she was Wednesday just before noon. Cole was working from home on Ridge Creek Drive when she got a motion alert from her doorbell camera. She didn’t think much of it until her dogs started barking out of control.
“My dogs were going insane,” she recalled. “When I came out of my office, I saw flames underneath the door and black smoke coming into my living room.”
A playback of her doorbell camera showed a man carrying a clear bottle, with what fire officials said contained an accelerant, walking up to Cole’s front door, and pouring out the liquid. Moments later, flames and black smoke are seen billowing from the area. Cole quickly grabbed a bucket of water and doused the fire.
“I’ve never seen this person in my life,” she said about the man seen in the video. “Literally, aside from my neighbors, nobody even really knows I exist.”
On Thursday, Dekalb County Fire Rescue issued a be on the lookout, or BOLO, for the suspect now wanted for arson.
Capt. Jaeson Daniels said it’s too early to tell if the man was intentionally trying to hurt Cole or someone else, but most concerning is how casual he appeared in the video.
“This is something that could’ve gotten someone killed,” Daniels said. “It was like it wasn’t a bother to him that he was doing it. It seemed normal to him.”
Cole said the incident was traumatizing and that it triggered her anxiety. She said if she could pack up and leave today, she would. She’s grateful there was no loss of life or property.
“This could have ended in the worse way for me, for everybody and this was a complete stranger and that’s what terrifies me,” Cole said.
There is a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the man seen in the video.
Anyone with information is asked to call (1-800)-282-5804.
Decaturish media partner Atlanta News First provided this story.