Arson probe stalls |

Arson probe stalls

Investigators said Tuesday they had come to a dead-end in the case of a suspicious fire that destroyed a home Aug. 16 south of Grass Valley.

Two couples and one child were displaced in the fire on the 13200 block of Dog Bar Road, near La Barr Meadows Road.

The residents included Amber Gorman, 25; her 5-year-old daughter, Kailey; her fiance, Daniel Anderson, 25; Wayne Brown Correctional Facility officer Chris Stanio; and Stanio’s girlfriend.

Stanio was at work when the fire broke out at about 6 a.m., and everyone else was able to escape outside.

Nevada County Sheriff’s Sgt. Jeff Powell said investigators have a possible motive for the arson and a short list of suspects. He said, however, there is not enough evidence to lead to an arrest.

If someone is arrested, the suspect will likely face charges including attempted murder and arson, according to the sheriff’s office.

Powell said fire investigators determined the blaze started in a car that was parked next to the garage. The car did not have a battery and was not operable.

In preliminary tests, fire investigators determined the fuel in the fire was “petroleum-based,” Powell said. However, since the fire burned so hot, it is difficult to know for sure, he said.

The fire came less than one month after Stanio’s and Anderson’s vehicles were broken into July 24. Several personal items were stolen out of Stanio’s vehicle, including a stereo and his sheriff’s office badge.

In late July, a travel trailer on La Barr Meadows Road being used by one of the female tenants of the house fire was also burned.

While investigators would not release any specific information, they said the two fires might be connected.

Anyone with information about the Aug. 16 fire is asked to call sheriff’s office at 265-1471.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Grass Valley and Nevada County make The Union’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User