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Fire investigators make arrest in North Las Vegas arson investigation

The man North Las Vegas fire investigators arrested in connection with a Monday night arson investigation claimed he started a fire in a house because drug dealers were after him and he needed to see, according to a police document.

About 7:50 p.m. Monday, North Las Vegas fire crews responded to the 2300 block of East Nelson Avenue in response to a house fire, the city’s police department said in a statement. Two people were taken to the hospital with nonlife-threatening injuries, police said.

According to a police department arrest report, Tony Fernandez said he went home with his girlfriend on Monday.

“Tony stated that he though (sic) drug dealears (sic) were after them, and they had been chasing him for a week,” the report said.

He also stated the house was dark so he lit a bag of dog food on fire so he could see. Fernandez then threw the lit bag onto a cardboard box, which made the fire grow, the report said. “He then stated the fire was out of control so he threw several bed mattresses onto the box.”

The fire caused injury to Ferdnandez’s girlfriend, whose name was not released; she suffered second- and third-degree burns on her wrists, hands and arms, the report said. Her hair was also burned. She was treated at the scene before being taken to University Medical Center.

Fire department arson investigators later arrested Fernandez, police said. The 23-year-old was booked into the Las Vegas City Jail on one count of first-degree arson and one count of battery with a deadly weapon.

Contact Christian Bertolaccini at cbertolaccini@reviewjournal.com and 702-383-0381. Follow @bertolaccinic on Twitter.

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