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Monday, March 4, 2024
March 4, 2024

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Vancouver man suspected in arson near Van Mall neighborhood

Gransbery accused in gas pump fire, to be arraigned Jan. 20

By , Columbian staff reporter

A Vancouver man is accused of lighting a gas pump on fire Sunday morning near the Van Mall neighborhood, court records show.

Darren A. Gransbery, 32, appeared Monday in Clark County Superior Court on suspicion of first-degree arson.

Judge John Fairgrieve set Gransbery’s bail at $250,000, and he is scheduled to be arraigned Jan. 20.

Vancouver police responded at about 10:40 a.m. to the 76 gas station at 4905 N.E. 94th Ave., for reports of an arson. Dispatchers said someone reported a man lit a gas pump on fire and left, according to a probable cause affidavit.

When officers arrived, Vancouver firefighters were on scene extinguishing the damaged pump. An officer reported mild smoke coming from the pump and a strong odor of gasoline, court records state.

Shortly after, an officer located Gransbery walking about a block from the gas station and detained him. Officers said Gransbery matched the suspect captured in security video, and witnesses identified him as the one who started the fire. Officers also said they smelled the odor of gasoline on Gransbery, according to the affidavit.

Police said Gransbery admitted to starting the fire.

Gransbery poured some gasoline on the ground and used a lighter to ignite it, according to investigators. The fire severely damaged the pump, making it inoperable. The fire was also in close proximity to at least two people and a parked vehicle, the affidavit says.

Court records state that a deputy fire marshal confirmed the cause of the fire was arson.

A jail pre-booking sheet notes that Gransbery told police he started the fire because he was suicidal.

If you need help, you can reach the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline 24/7 by calling or texting 988 to be connected with a free licensed counselor. People can also reach mental health professionals on the Clark County Crisis Line at 800-626-8137.