LEWISVILLE (CBSDFW.COM) – Officials with the Lewisville Fire Department say they have found and arrested the person responsible for a string of car arsons… but they couldn’t have done it without a 4-legged officer.
Investigators say an ATF-K9 named Molly, from the Grand Prairie Fire Department, helped make the case.
A task force led by the LFD arrested Zainul Bandeali in connection with the arsons at the Windsor Court Apartments and other locations, dating back to July 2019. Over the span of months there had been 10 vehicle arsons at the complex, damaging some 20 vehicles.
Investigators say Bandeali lived at the complex, but they’re still working to find out why he allegedly set the fires.
Molly, a 6-year-old yellow Labrador retriever trained to sniff out accelerants, helped lead investigators to the 63-year-old. Molly trains to eat, meaning she must find flammable liquids in exchange for food — a normal procedure in K9 training.
So far Bandeali has been charged with five counts of arson. His bail is set at $375,000.
The Lewisville Police Department and the Texas Rangers also assisted in the investigation.