A 34-year-old man found walking away from a house fire on Hill Road Thursday night — wearing clothes with burn marks and that smelled like petroleum — is charged with first degree arson.
Patrick Sean Irving is being held in the Ada County Jail.
Ada County Sheriff’s deputies, Boise police, and Boise Fire investigators are determining if Irving is involved in the two other house fires in the 6700 block Hill Road since Tuesday.
There is evidence at least two of the fires — at 6720 Hill Road — were lit on purpose. Boise Fire investigators have not yet determined a cause for the fire which gutted the house next door earlier this week.
Fire crews were sent to 6720 Hill Road just before 9:30 p.m. Thursday after getting 911 calls about a house fire.
It was the second time fire crews went to that address Thursday, as someone tried to set the same home on fire around 1:30 a.m. the night before.
For the first call, the people who lived at the home were able to put the fire out before it spread. On Thursday night, they were able to do that again with the assistance of Boise fire crews.
Fire crews on their way to the home Thursday night saw a man walking away from the fire, wearing a hooded sweatshirt and jeans, on Hill Road headed towards Gary Lane. They called that description into Ada County dispatch.
A Garden City Police officer found the man – later identified as Irving — walking on Hill Road moments later.
It was during that interaction where officers detected the strong odor of petroleum and saw Irving’s clothes had burns. Detectives interviewed Irving before arresting him and booking into the jail.
Law enforcement’s interaction with Irving began last week.
Boise Police arrested Irving on Oct. 17 for trespassing at a vacant home at 6700 Hill Road. Irving was booked into the jail on a misdemeanor charge of unlawful entry. He posted the $300 bond and was released later that day.
Boise Fire crews were sent to the same home at 6700 Hill Road just before 6 a.m. Tuesday. That home was actively burning when crews arrived. Crews put out the blaze but vacant home was badly damaged. Fire officials have not yet determined the cause but do know it started in the living room.
The next fire call came for the home next door, at 6720 Hill Road, just before 1:30 a.m. Thursday. It appears someone set up a pile of debris next to the garage door and set it on fire.
The next call came just before 9:30 p.m. Thursday.
People called 911 reported a fire and hearing shots.
It was later determined that a resident of the home fired a warning shot into the ground to scare away whoever tried to light the house on fire.
Irving will make his initial court appearance Friday afternoon.
The crime of first degree arson is punishable by up to 25 years in prison.