Area Arson Suspect Burned Down Home of Ex-Girlfriend
When the story first broke, and there was a $1,000 reward for the suspect's capture, we figured there was more to it than 'just' an arson.
A look at court documents reveals a troubled past for 37-year-old Todd James Gaines of Burbank, one involving a restraining order for him slashing the tires of a woman's car.
Gaines, according to court documents and officials, allegedly burned down the home on Schumacher Private Road near Benton City because his ex-girlfriend was buying the place.
A nationwide bulletin has been issued for Gaines, whom officials say knows they are looking for him and so far has eluded capture.
We now know neighbors hear the home heard an explosion, saw flames, then saw a vehicle speeding away from the burning home on May 26th around 9PM. At the time Benton County Deputies said no one was home, the place was "unoccupied."
Reports indicate Gaines apparently knows the homeowner and learned they were selling the house to his ex-girlfriend. They had broken up recently.
The reward for information leading to his arrest is still at $1,000, but the nationwide arrest warrant is $100K. Court documents also indicated a number of persons and even businesses have filed restraining orders against Gaines for his violent or erratic behavior.
One of the incidents included a 2019 situation where he slashed the tires of a woman who lives in Pasco after she had terminated a relationship.
Officials say a large pickup he was seen driving away from the scene is one he may have had access to, but he is only supposed to be driving vehicles equipped with DUI interlock devices.
His behavior and past are why officials say if anyone sees him they should not approach him, but call (509)-628-0333.
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