3 arsons in 4 years, business owner pleads for public's help
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
CREATED Jan. 1, 2013 - UPDATED: Jan. 2, 2013
Reporter: Maggie Vespa
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - The cause is no longer the question in a handful of fires, all aimed at the same small business.
Authorities are now on the hunt for the serial arsonist who sparked them, and they need your help.
After seeing his small tattoo shops suffer not one, not two, but three intentionally set fires,
Nicholas Becker realizes his honest living is someone else's easy target.
"You're a coward," he said. "You're an absolute coward."
The coward taking aim?
Police peg the man pictured here.
Caught on Becker's own security cameras, he is believed to the one responsible for the last two of three arsons, a streak that started in November, 2008.
"I see all the charred items, our paintings, you know all the work that we put into it... That is heartbreaking," he said.
Following that first fire Becker was bent on bouncing back. He reopened the original location, near 22nd Street & Alvernon, and added a second near Speedway & Alvernon.
But last month brought a devastating double déjà vu.
"It's broken my sprits," he said.
First on December 7th, an early morning fire sparked at the Speedway shop.
Three weeks later brought blaze number three, at 22nd.
Investigators deemed them both arson.
This time, their sights are set.
"Think about it, if you were in their position," said longtime customer Ayla Baker.
She calls the crime and the culprit dispicable.
"You don't like them? Do something productive with your own life to take your negativity out on instead of doing something to ruin somebody else's," she said.
An unexpected expert in the art of the reopen, Becker's business now operates solely out of the Speedway store.
But the husband and father says the damage, more than $300,000 worth, has drained his family dry.
And he wants these fires and this fear extinguished for good.
"What's to say this person wouldn't put on fire a Wendy's or a hair salon or other type of people out there that aren't tattoo related? It's not just us," he said. "It's everybody."
TPD describes the man pictured in those surveillance photos as a hispanic or caucasian male, approximately 6'1", 200 lbs. He may be driving an older model pickup truck.
Becker says they believe there is more than one person responsible for this crime.
Anyone with information is asked to call TPD, 88-crime.
You can also contact Becker, at K42 tattoo. That phone number is 790-7039. You can head to their website, by clicking here.