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Friday, August 19, 2016

Reward Offered in Milwaukee Commercial Fires



MILWAUKEE — The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has offered a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for any of several commercial fires set during the overnight hours of Aug. 13 and Aug. 14, 2016, in Milwaukee.

The ATF National Response Team (NRT) will be on scene in Milwaukee to provide additional expertise in determining the cause and origin of these fires.  Commercial fires currently under investigation by ATF and state and local partners, including Wisconsin Department of Justice: Division of Criminal Investigations (DCI), the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Department, the Milwaukee Police Department and Milwaukee Fire Department. The following are the Milwaukee locations:

    BP Gas Station at 3114 North Sherman Boulevard
    O’Reilly Auto Parts at 3405 West Fond du Lac Avenue
    BMO Harris Bank at 3536 West Fond du Lac Avenue
    Jet Beauty Supply at 3501 West Burleigh Street
    PJ’s Supermarket at 3079 North 21st Street
    MJM Liquor Store at 2229 West Fond du Lac Avenue
    A to Z Wholesale Liquor at 2233 West Fond du Lac Avenue
    Big Jim’s Liquor at 2161 West Hopkins Street

Aggregate losses are estimated to exceed several million dollars.  Anyone having information about these fires should call the toll free ATF hotline at 888-ATF-FIRE (888-283-3473). Callers may remain anonymous.

The primary mission of the NRT is to concentrate ATF explosives and fire investigative resources and expertise on large scale incidents, or on more complex investigations due to the size, scope, or number of victims as a result of the incident.

The NRT provides an immediate and sustained nationwide response capability, typically deploying within 24 hours of notification, with state-of-the-art equipment and the most qualified ATF personnel available.  The NRT’s resources include a fleet of fully equipped response vehicles strategically located throughout the United States that allow the NRT to be self-contained for the forensic examination of explosives and arson.

The NRT works in conjunction with other investigators to reconstruct the scene, identify the seat of the blast or origin of the fire, and determine the cause.  In the case of bombings and arsons, NRT members gather evidence to support criminal prosecutions. A deployed team is generally broken down into two components: a group that processes the scene and an investigative-lead element.  In the course of the overall investigation, both components coordinate daily to ensure investigative continuity. This is the 23nd activation of the NRT in fiscal year 2016, and the 795th activation since the inception of the team in 1978.

ATF is the Federal agency primarily responsible for administering and enforcing the criminal and regulatory provisions of the federal laws pertaining to destructive devices, explosives, and arson. More information about ATF and its programs is available at www.atf.gov.

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