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Puna man charged with arson in Hawaii Acres fire

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 9:32 a.m. HST, May 1, 2013

A 26-year-old Puna man was charged with setting a building fire in Hawaiian Acres on Friday.

Police today charged Justin James Clark of Kurtistown with first-degree arson. His bail was set at $50,000. He is being held at the Hilo police cellblock.

At 10:48 a.m. Friday, patrol officers and Hawaii County firefighters responded to a structure fire at Alulu Road and Ooaa Road in Hawaiian Acres. The fire was extinguished, but not before causing extensive damage to the structure. A Fire Department investigator determined that the fire was suspicious. 

Police said a sports-utility vehicle occupied by the suspect had been seen speeding away from the scene shortly before witnesses heard popping sounds and saw the house in flames. The fire department’s canine unit found flammable materials in the vehicle.

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