A California man has been charged with arson after being accused of lighting the five-alarm fire that destroyed a San Jose Home Depot earlier this month when he tried to steal, prosecutors announced. a cart full of tools, prosecutors reported.
Dyllin Jaycruz Gogue, 27, was indicted on charges including aggravated arson, seven counts of grand theft and three counts of petty theft, Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office announced in a news release.
Prosecutors said he purposely lit hell in the aisle of Home Depot on Blossom Hill Road on April 9.
The fire, which sent “employees and customers fleeing for their lives,” leveled the entire 98,827-square-foot store and caused damage, prosecutors said at a news conference Tuesday. inventory is estimated at 17 million USD.
Prosecutors said the fire is believed to have occurred on the same day Gogue took place the “theft”.
Gogue allegedly stole items from a local Bass Pro store earlier in the day, set a fire around 5:30 p.m. local time (8:30 p.m. ET), and attempted to leave the Home Depot. “with a cart containing tools,” the bulletin stated.
He was stopped by a Home Depot employee and fled in someone else’s car then stole items from a nearby Macy’s.
“It’s amazing that no one was injured in the fire that had five alarms so hot and so loud that they could be detected from a satellite in space,” Rosen said. “But it came close, too far, too close, causing many injuries and deaths.”
The National Weather Service’s office in San Francisco said signs of extreme heat from the fire. observed from space.
More than 100 firefighters tackled the blaze and it took 12 hours to extinguish, NBC Bay Area reported.
Photos from the aftermath show the remains of the Home Depot charred with the roof collapsed and much of it burned to the ground.
Gogue was arrested on Friday and was arranged Tuesday afternoon. He offered no defense at the hearing, NBC Bay Area reported. He will return to court for a guilty plea on June 1.
Rosen said the maximum sentence for this charge is 14 years to life in prison.
NBC News has reached out to Gogue’s attorney for comment.
“I thank all of my law enforcement partners who quickly brought this person to justice,” Rosen said in the statement. “And I am very grateful that this is not a mass murder. This fire – burned during business hours – could easily leave bodies in the rubble. It was horribly reckless conduct, and we will prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law.”
Home Depot told NBC News that more than 180 employees working at the store were relocated to nearby locations following the fire.
“We are very grateful to first responders, the San Jose fire brigade, police and partner organizations for their swift response and investigation that led to this arrest,” said spokeswoman Margaret Smith. .
“Above all, we are grateful that no one was harmed and all of our associates and customers are safe,” Smith said. “Thanks to our associates for the quick action and courage they showed to quickly evacuate the building, which ensured no one was harmed.”