Police: At least one fire set outside murdered girl's Saginaw home

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by RYAN WOOD & TODD UNGER

Bio | Email | Follow: @toddWFAA8

WFAA

Posted on July 19, 2013 at 7:28 AM

Updated Friday, Jul 19 at 2:06 PM

UPDATE 1:55 p.m.: Authorities have now clarified their earlier statements. They believe the car fire was an act of arson, but aren't sure if the memorial was burned intentionally.


SAGINAW -- Authorities are investigating the cause of two fires outside the home of a murdered Saginaw girl.

Officer Damon Ing from the Saginaw Police Department said someone intentionally burned a vehicle parked outside six-year-old Alanna Gallagher's house.

At the corner of the 600 block of Babbling Brook Dr., a teddy bear memorial was also burned, but police said Friday afternoon that fire may have been accidental, the fault of an unattended candle.

At about 2 a.m., a Ford Taurus, Karl Gallagher's car, was set on fire.

Speaking for the first time publicly since her daughter was killed, Laura Gallagher said the family was in shock.

"We're just very scared," she said.  "A neighbor came running over and knocked on the door... All we know is it was intentional."

Saginaw police, the ATF and other arson investigators are working to find out who is responsible. 

"It's definitely intentional," Ing said, referring to the car fire. "The thing is, there's a lot of speculation going on around the city and everything, and right now, it's disheartening to our police department, because its taken valuable manpower off to do this [fire] investigation when we could be using it somewhere else at this time."

Ing did say, however, there have been no threats to the Gallagher family.

The ATF and arson investigators remained on scene through Friday morning.

Gallagher's body was found wrapped in a tarp in the street less than a mile from her home at Willow Creek Park on July 1.

No arrests have been made in the case. The Tarrant County Medical Examiner still lists Gallagher's cause of death as pending.

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