The fire that tore through a mobile home last month was intentionally set, according to an investigation by the Mountain View Fire Department.
Firefighters discovered the body of its resident, Leroy Beal, after being called to extinguish an early morning blaze on Dec. 2 at the Santiago Villa mobile home park, located at 1075 Space Park Way. Beal died not from the fire but of a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the mouth, according to an official with the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner-Coroner's Office.
Fire department inspectors determined that the fire's cause was "incendiary," meaning that it was intentionally set, said spokeswoman Jaime Garrett. "Due to severe fire damage, we were unable to locate an exact point of origin or ignition source," she said.
Firefighters could not enter the home until the flames were completely extinguished because the structural integrity of the unit had been badly damaged, said Garrett. There were no injuries reported.
Man with gun reported
A concerned citizen called the police on Dec. 26 at about 6:15 reporting that he had just seen a man with a silver or chrome handgun walking in the area of Cuesta Park.
According to Sgt. Sean Thompson, public information officer with the Mountain View Police Department, police searched the park and the surrounding areas, but never found anyone matching the description given.
The witness said the man was wearing dark shoes, dark pants and a white sweatshirt.
Shoplifters swipe Christmas cheer
Two men stole a few bottles of booze from a local liquor store on Christmas Eve.
It all happened in less than a minute, according to the police report. On Dec. 24, at about 7:20 p.m., two men in their early 20s and dressed in dark clothing walked into Bailey Liquors, located at 570 N. Shoreline Blvd., grabbed some bottles of rum and tequila and then fled on foot.
The clerk didn't get a good look at the men, according to Sgt. Saul Jaeger, public information officer with the Mountain View Police Department.
'Grinch' steals TV
A real-life Grinch stole a television from an apartment on the 300 block of Escuela Avenue on Christmas morning.
Residents of a unit at the Park Vista Apartments, located at 316 Escuela Ave., told police they left their door unlocked and their home unattended for less than half an hour — 6:30 a.m. to 6:59 a.m. — on Dec. 25. When they returned from a neighboring apartment they discovered that someone had taken their 40-inch TV.
It's unfortunate, but it just goes to show how many burglaries are "crimes of opportunity," said Sgt. Saul Jaeger, public information officer for the Mountain View Police Department.
Jaeger advised Mountain View denizens to lock their doors when going out during the holidays even if it's just for quick errand or to visit the neighbors. Leaving lights on and keeping valuables out of sight from prying eyes is also a good idea, he said.