Share This Page

Abandoned Penn Hills building home to 2 suspicious fires in 4 days

| Wednesday, June 26, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Patrick Varine | Penn Hills Progress
Two suspicious fires have been set in a four-day period at this abandoned building on Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad property on the 6600 block of Leechburg Road.
Patrick Varine | Penn Hills Progress
Two suspicious fires have been set in a four-day period at this abandoned building on Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad property on the 6600 block of Leechburg Road.
Patrick Varine | Penn Hills Progress
Two suspicious fires have been set in a four-day period at this abandoned building on Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad property on the 6600 block of Leechburg Road.
Patrick Varine | Penn Hills Progress
Two suspicious fires have been set in a four-day period at this abandoned building on Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad property on the 6600 block of Leechburg Road.

Two suspicious fires within a four-day period at the same vacant building have police and county fire marshals seeking answers.

Police and fire crews responded to separate reports of arson at an abandoned building on the 6600 block of Leechburg Road, next to the Department of Public Works salt garage earlier this month.

The first, on June 4, was a vehicle on fire, registered to Cheryl Crock of East Hickory, Pa. Police were able to identify Crock using the vehicle's VIN number, but in his report, Ptl. Michael Lape said he was unable to locate a Cheryl Crock in Pennsylvania. The vehicle was not reported stolen.

On June 8, police, fire and EMS crews responded at about 12:30 p.m. to a second report of a fire at the same building, which police said is owned by Bessemer and Lake Erie Railroad. The railroad runs between Conneaut, Ohio and Penn Hills. The company is in the process of selling the property to what the police report referred to as an “unknown business.”

Rail officials could not be reached for comment.

An officer from U.S. Steel and Union Railroad also responded to the second fire, and told police he had been patrolling the area before noon and did not notice anything suspicious.

The police report from the vehicle fire notes that “the inside of the building is full of trash and shows signs that person(s) may be going in and out.”

County fire marshals were called to investigate.

Patrick Varine is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7845 or pvarine@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.