FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – After more than two years, the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Ranger Division have announced they have identified several “persons of interest” in the 2008 governor’s mansion fire in Austin.
Arson investigators have questioned three people who were seen on surveillance video, four days before the arson, driving by the mansion and taking pictures.
While investigators say the person driving the vehicle along with two passengers inside, are all now considered “persons of interest”, officials are not releasing the names of the individuals.
Officials say the driver admitted being behind the wheel while the pictures of the mansion were being taken. At least one of the “persons of interest” first told investigators they had not been a passenger in the vehicle in question, but the person later admitted being in the vehicle and taking photographs after failing a polygraph test.
Investigators say unreleased video shows someone throwing a Molotov cocktail at the mansion’s front porch, where the fire started. The fire caused parts of the roof to buckle and charred much of the front of the structure. The video showing the person who torched the mansion was made public Friday. Officials also released two sketches of the person who they believe started the fire. The person in the sketch was not in the vehicle with the persons of interest.
The Texas Governor’s Mansion had already been under a $10 million renovation project when the fire started.
The two-story Greek revival style house has been the official home of every Texas governor since it was completed in 1856.
Anyone with information about the arson is urged to call (800) 252-TIPS (8477) or text “DPS plus your tip” to 274637 (CRIMES). All calls or texts are anonymous. Click here to submit a tip online.