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Hawaiian Gardens : Deputies Have No Suspects in Pair of Arson Blazes

July 27, 1989

The Hawaiian Gardens medical clinic that was damaged in a pair of arson blazes last week has reopened for business, but investigators say they still have no suspects in the case.

On the evening of July 16, two fires broke out within two hours of one another in the north wing of a medical office building that houses an outpatient clinic operated by FHP Health Care. The clinic is next door to Charter Community Hospital, which is managed by the health maintenance organization.

Sgt. Ronald Moya, head of arson investigations for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, said that his deputies are still trying to develop leads in the case by talking to security personnel and others who had access to the building. Investigators have not said how they determined that the fires were set. Last month, a similar blaze broke out in the building during a weekday afternoon, routing about 285 doctors, nurses and patients. That fire was confined to a janitor's closet, while the latest incident resulted in heavy damage to the clinic's laboratory.

The cause of the first fire was laid to a carelessly discarded cigarette, although arson specialists say they now wonder if it too was the work of the same arsonist.

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