Crime

Walmart arson suspect busted by Richland police. Second man still on the loose

What happens when you call 911? Use these tips for better emergency response

Do you know what to do if you accidentally dial 911? Do you know what information is crucial in an emergency? Here's what you need to know in North Texas to get the police, fire or ambulance service you need fast.
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Do you know what to do if you accidentally dial 911? Do you know what information is crucial in an emergency? Here's what you need to know in North Texas to get the police, fire or ambulance service you need fast.

One of the two men accused of starting three fires inside a Walmart store is behind bars.

Richland police arrested Aaron Cockrill, 40, for allegedly setting the fires inside the Queensgate store on June 6. He was booked into jail Tuesday on suspicion of first-degree arson.

Detectives used surveillance video to identify Cockrill and Christopher Crappa, 26, as the two suspects, said police.

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Richland police arrested Aaron Cockrill, 40, for allegedly setting the fires inside the Queensgate store on June 6. Courtesy Richland Police Department

While Crappa was identified quickly, police did not initially know who the second man was.

Last Thursday, employees spotted a small fire in the garden center shortly after 10:30 p.m., called 911 and grabbed a fire extinguisher, Richland firefighters said. They soon discovered similar fires in the housewares and stationery sections.

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Richland police are looking for Christopher Crappa, 26, who was at the Richland Walmart when three fires were set Thursday night. Courtesy Richland Police Department

All of them were small and were quickly put out, but the smoke forced the store to close for nearly five hours, while fans were used to clear smoke from the air.

Anyone with information about Crappa’s whereabouts is asked to call the non-emergency dispatch number at 509-628-0333 or email hstohel@ci.richland.wa.us.

Cameron Probert covers breaking news and education for the Tri-City Herald, where he tries to answer readers’ questions about why police officers and firefighters are in your neighborhood. He studied communications at Washington State University.

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