An officer with the West Precinct of the Birmingham Police Department has been charged with setting fires in Warrior, and is a suspect in additional arson cases in Ensley.

Curtis Thornton, whose address is lasted as Dana Road in Warrior, was arrested on two counts of second-degree arson, one of attempted arson and one of criminal mischief, according to Warrior Police Chief Ray Horn.

"These took place over the last three months," Horn said. "They weren't [occupied] homes, just a utility building and an abandoned trailer - and the trailer had already burned once before years ago."

At least five fires are considered suspect. All were near Thornton's residence.

Horn credited State Fire Marshal Edward Paulk for linking Thornton to the fires.

Thornton could be implicated in a string of more than a dozen suspicious fires in Ensley and other nearby communities in the past two weeks. At a press conference Friday afternoon, Birmingham Police Chief A.C Roper said that Thornton had not yet been charged with any of those incidents.

Thornton is held on more than $300,000 bond, and has been placed on administrative leave by the department.

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