NFD Arson Investigators Arrest Man for Williams Avenue Arson
Joseph Pleasant; Public Information Officer
NFD Arson Dog Spencer led investigators to suspect who was still at the location
Nashville, TN (July 24, 2018) –Nashville Fire Department charged Donald F. Todd Jr.,47, with arson in connection with a vacant house fire located at 302 Williams Avenue, Tuesday July 24, 2018.
A passing driver spotted the home on fire around 5:40 am and called 911.
Engine 31 arrived on the scene within three minutes of the 911 call. Firefighters found heavy fire coming from two sides of the home. Engine 31 began an aggressive interior attack on the fire and with the assistance of other responding companies extinguished the fire.
There was no electricity connected to the home and NFD Arson Investigators responded to the scene with NFD Arson Dog Spencer.
Once the fire was extinguished and foam was put down to suppress further hot spots NFD Arson Investigators deployed Spencer into the home.
The presence of foam made it impossible for Spencer to signal the presence of an accelerant through his trained action of sitting. Instead Spencer did something he has never done before Tuesday’s fire. He gave an audible alert by yelping.
Spencer hit on multiple locations in the home where he detected an accelerant. His handler brought him out of the home and let him off his leash to rest.
However, Spencer instead followed his nose and lead investigators to a shed on the property. Investigators found Todd Jr., inside the shed.
NFD Arson Investigators charged him with arson. His bond is set at $75,000.
The home is deemed a total loss with a property and content combined estimated loss of $145,000.
Todd Jr., was currently out on bond for an unrelated vandalism charge. He is also on probation and has a lengthy arrest history with convictions for felony burglary, felony aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Todd is under investigation by the MNPD in relation to multiple business burglaries in the Madison area.
Through NFD Arson Investigators and Spencer’s work, Todd Jr., is behind bars.
Photo Courtesy: Wayne Haley