Viral Home Depot Fire Caused By Shoplifter As ‘Distraction’
Dyllin Jaycruz Gogue from San Jose California was charged with three counts of arson, seven counts of grand theft, and three counts of petty theft.
The 27-year-old was accused of burning down an entire Home Depot in San Jose while attempting to steal thousands of dollars in tools.
Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen said "Gogue intentionally set the fire in an aisle at Home Depot while trying to take a cartload of tools worth thousands of dollars from the hardware store on Blossom Hill Road." Fox 2
What's crazy, is that the fire was so huge it was visible from space. The giant flames covering the 98,000 square-foot store cost $17 million in inventory loss. Lucky no one was hurt.
Jeff Rosen said, "I’m thankful that my office is not prosecuting a multiple murder case," he said. "The evidence shows that the suspect who had earlier that day stolen items from a nearby Bass Pro Shop lit the fire at the Home Depot and tried to leave the store with a cart containing stolen tools. He was stopped by a Home Depot employee and fled in another person’s car."
San Jose Police Chief Anthony Mata said, "When someone commits a terrible act of this magnitude that endangers the lives of many, good people spring into action to save lives. That’s what our San Jose Police Department and other first responders did that day."
You would think after this criminal burned down an entire hardware store he would hide, or go home and think about what he had just done... Nope... He decided to continue his shoplifting spree at a Macy's.
Gogue is a chronic thief who stole thousands of dollars in merchandise from stores, sometimes revisiting the same stores more than once. A list of his recent thefts includes:
- 45 pairs of stolen Levi's Jeans from Kohls's
- Stolen keyboard and guitar from Guitar Center
- 14 pairs of stolen sunglasses from Sunglasses Hut
- And now stolen tools and major arson to a Home Depot
ATF Special Agent in Charge Patrick Gorman said, "Arson is a dangerous, violent crime. This unnecessary and tragic fire could have resulted in injury or loss of life."
Fire investigators are unsure how the fire was set and spread.
"It is possible there are enough combustibles in an area to overcome what the ratings of the fire protection systems are," said San Jose Fire Chief Robert Sapien. "It is possible to have a fire like this even in a protected structure."
Gogue is being held without bail in the Santa Clara County jail. A plea hearing is scheduled for June 1.