By MATT PIKE
St. Joseph Post
A string of fires near Polo on Tuesday classified as arson are still under investigation by the Caldwell County Sheriff's Office.
One of them claimed the life of a 96-year-old woman. The body of Lorene Fickess was found in the first house fire.
Caldwell County Sheriff Mitch Allen says the suspect's vehicle was spotted in front of all three house fires near Polo.
"Plus, the fact when you have three fires on the same road within a four-mile distance, and there's signs of arson in at least one of the houses, it's pretty obvious that they're all connected," Allen tells KFEQ/St. Joseph Post
The vehicle in question spotted at the scene is a black SUV with dark tinted windows driven by a black male.
Allen says his department will continue to question people in the area who had cameras at their homes or may have seen something.
"A lot of times people see something or they know something, they don't know they know something until we talk to them," Allen explains. "So, we're hoping that somebody comes forward or we talk to somebody that may have that piece of the puzzle that puts it all together for us."
The Sheriff's department is asking the public for help in the investigation. Anyone with information is encouraged to call 816 586 2681 or the Tips hotline at 816 586 TIPS.
A suspicious fire in Lafayette County is also currently under investigation.
Investigators are working to determine if it is linked with the fires in Caldwell County.
Allen says he's spoken to Lafayette County Sheriff Kerrick Alumbaugh and exchanged information about the case.
"I know that that is arson as well, however there is no evidence that would connect that fire with our fire up here, they're still investigating it down there," Allen says.
Allen adds that he will stay in contact with Alumbaugh to compare notes and see if a link to the fires is found.