Video shows arsonist burning cars at Memphis auto shop - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Video shows arsonist burning cars at Memphis auto shop

Surveillance video of man setting cars on fire. (Source: WMC Action News 5) Surveillance video of man setting cars on fire. (Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Source: WMC Action News 5) (Source: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

Firefighters rushed to a body shop where seven cars were on fire Wednesday morning.

Crews were able to control flames inside the burning cars at Johnson's Automotive on Pleasant View Road. 

"I'm a Channel 5 watcher everyday, and I woke up around 4:15 a.m. to turn on the news and I see my sign in the background in the breaking news," Johnson's Automotive owner Don Johnson said.

Surveillance video from a business next door caught a man running into the parking lot, starting a fire, and throwing burning materials onto the cars before running away.

The cars went up in flames as another car drove up and took the arsonist away.

"It could've been a lot worse," Johnson said.

He said there was a nearby gas line. If the arsonist had lit that line on fire, he might have blown up businesses all down the street.

It's at least the third business to be hit by an arsonist in the last few months. In December someone set fire to a car at Expert Import Service, which is just down the road from Johnson's Automotive.

Johnson said he has noticed a pattern.

He said a fire was set over spring break, Christmas break, and the first bit of summer break. Each of those breaks coincides with school being out.

"I don't know if it's kids or what, but it's just some senseless acts it looks like," Johnson said.

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