Tulsa Man Arrested For Second-Degree Arson

Friday, June 2nd 2017, 7:19 am

Tulsa Fire marshals and police investigators arrested a 37-year-old man in connection with a string of fires in west Tulsa earlier in the week.

Christopher Charles Smith is in the Tulsa County jail for second-degree arson. 

One of the four vacant houses set on fire was about to be moved into, according to a neighbor. 

"Just glow, I mean, just glow. it was horrible. everything was glowing," said Crista Suggs, who lives near the vacant home.  

Looking at what's left of a house on 10th street, she recalled the scene Wednesday night. 

"Fire was everywhere and then sirens were everywhere. I was thankful for the sirens," Suggs said. 

Smith's arrest report states Smith bragged to witnesses about the fires, saying he used a lighter and dropped drug paraphanalia in front of one house. 

Tulsa Fire Marshal Andy Teeter said that was significant. 

6/1/2017 Related Story: Tulsa Church, Other Sites Hit By Suspected Arsonist

A church, four houses, a truck and a dumpster all caught fire within a couple hours near Charles Page and 65th West Avenue. 

"Anytime we see a second fire - even if it's separated by time -in the same area, it raises suspicions," Teeter said. 

Suggs said the woman who owns this house was getting it ready for someone to move in. 

"She's amazing," Suggs said of the homeowner. "She's done everything she can for her family, and for someone just to come along and 'poof,' and take it from them."

While it's difficult to look at, she said there's something to be thankful for.

She says firefighters saved her family pet goat named "Cowboy" from getting too close to the flames.

"He's the only eyewitness I know of - poor thing!" Suggs said. 

While Cowboy is doing alright, two firefighters got hurt during the string of fires, one has a leg injury, the other has small second-degree burns. 

The fire department says it may be a few days before the firefighter with second-degree burns is able to go back to work. 

If you have any information on any of the fires, call the arson hotline at 596-ARSN.