Arson suspects strike in Murrells Inlet

Arson suspects strike in Murrells Inlet

MURRELLS INLET, SC (WMBF) - Arson suspects are on the loose in Murrells Inlet, according to police.

After striking three times in 24 months, suspects set fire to a 20-foot cargo truck and the side of the America's Mattress store early Wednesday morning, according to a business owner.

The crime was caught on camera by surveillance cameras.

The two arson cases happened in the past three weeks but investigators said the suspects in each case are different.

In one case, someone set a moving truck on fire at the mattress store on a frontage road just off the Hwy 17 Bypass near the Garden City Connector.

Surveillance video showed the suspect starting another fire behind the mattress store. The suspect is covered in a hoodie and goes back and forth to a trash can in an effort to make the fire grow.

Store Owner Paul Morse said he is convinced whoever damaged his business will strike again.

"It really is a matter of when," added Morse. "This guy is very brazen and it seems like he likes to taunt the police and the business owners and that he'll continue to do this until he's caught."

Just down the frontage road from the mattress store are boarded up windows and charred marks on an auto body shop. Two weeks ago, police responded to another arson call.

Fire investigators said arson-related emergencies have been an ongoing issue in this area but in the past, those fires were only in dumpsters, not in buildings.

The change has arson victim Eric Klettlinger concerned.

"We just need to keep our eyes peeled and watch out for stuff like this I mean someone has to know something," added Klettlinger. "It's been going on for two years now. Say something."?

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