Katy, TX – A Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office (FBCSO) sergeant’s home has been fire-bombed twice in the span of one week, prompting a manhunt for the fugitive arsonist.
The first attack occurred at approximately 9:30 p.m. on Dec. 23, as the sergeant and his family were asleep in their home on South Mason Road, the FBCSO said in a press release.
He was awakened to find that the front of his house was on fire, Fort Bend County Sheriff Troy Nehls said during a press conference on Sunday.
“What we discovered through an investigation is that someone threw two Molotov cocktails at the front of the house,” Sheriff Nehls explained. “But apparently, that wasn’t enough.”
At approximately 3 a.m. on Sunday, a vehicle parked in the sergeant’s driveway was hit by “a couple more” Molotov cocktails, the sheriff said.
The vehicle burst into flames, and was a complete loss.
The sergeant and his family were inside their home at the time of the second attack as well.
“This is a very dangerous game people are playing,” Sheriff Nehls said.
He noted that there someone asleep in a bed right next to the window near where the initial explosions occurred.
“I believe that this is targeted,” the sheriff said, adding that the sergeant who was attacked was a longtime member of the FBCSO’s criminal investigations and robbery/homicide divisions.
Investigators are looking into the sergeant’s past cases to see if they can connect any of them with a potential suspect or suspects.
If those responsible for the attacks end up being affiliated with one of the sergeant’s prior investigations, the new arson case against them could be prosecuted as a federal hate crime, Sheriff Nehls said.
Fort Bend County Fire Marshal Mark Flathouse’s office is leading the investigation into the arsons.
Residents in the area have turned security footage of at least one of the attacks over to police.
Investigators are searching for a four-door, dark-colored Ford F-250 with a silver-colored construction rack on the back.
The FBCSO Crime Stoppers is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of those responsible.