Arsonist causes explosion at Kailua home - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Arsonist causes explosion at Kailua home

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KAILUA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Police believe an arsonist caused an explosion at a Kailua home. Emergency crews rushed to the house on Kupau Street in Keolu Hills just before 10:30 p.m. on Friday night. Residents heard a loud boom and saw flames.

According to investigators, the vacant house was recently put up for sale after being refurbished. Police said a man in his 20's used an accelerant to start the fire. Neighbors told Hawaii News Now that they could smell gasoline.

"The flames were out before the fire department got here. Investigators explained to me that there was so much accelerant in the house that the explosion actually blew the fire out," said neighbor Harvey Gerwig.

"I see a figure running down the road suspiciously so I try to go after him and he got startled. I asked the neighbors and they said he ran away with a gas can," said neighbor Galen Sato.

Damage to the home is estimated at $54,000. Police have opened a first-degree arson investigation.

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