For Immediate Release - August 10, 2017

Officials Announce Arson Cause of Waltham Fire

Public’s Help Requested; $100K Reward Offered

State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey, Waltham Fire Chief Paul Ciccone, and Waltham Police Chief Keith MacPherson have announced the cause of the 10-alarm fire on July 23, 2017 fire at 20 Cooper Street, Waltham is arson.

The fire resulted in the complete loss of the 264-unit apartment building as well as exposure damage to at least two other structures and more than 20 motor vehicles. There were four minor firefighter injuries and damages are estimated at $110 million.

State Fire Marshal Ostroskey said, “Anyone who has information about this fire, who saw or heard something, is asked to call the statewide Arson Hotline at 1-800-682-9229.” All calls are confidential. The Arson Hotline is part of the Arson Watch Reward program supported by the property and casualty insurance underwriting companies of Massachusetts. The program provides rewards of up to $5,000 for information that helps to solve the crime of arson. In addition, the property owner and their general contractor, Callahan Construction Managers, is offering an award of up to $100,000 upon the arrest and conviction of those responsible for this fire.

Chief Ciccone said, “An intentionally set fire of any size causes concern in the community and an arrest is the quickest way to help the community return to normal.”

Chief MacPherson said, “We need the community to come forward and help us solve this case. Let us determine what information is important. I want to thank those who have already shared photos and videos of the fire.”

The fire is being jointly investigated by the Waltham Fire and Police Departments, State Police assigned to the Office of the State Fire Marshal, and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) who often joins the investigation team for large fires.