Suspect arrested for apartment fire leaving dozens homeless


The individual now accounted for after a massive apartment fire on Azalea has now been arrested, according to Mobile Fire and Rescue.

Jarrod Jamar Thomas, 22, was arrested Saturday afternoon and is charged with Arson 1st since the building was occupied.

The fire that was reported at approximately 3:38 a.m. Saturday morning affected 25 units and displaced dozens of people.

The city of Mobile and the American Red Cross are working together to place families and individuals that lost their homes in a local shelter.

Local 15 spoke with the man charged with setting a fire at the Crossing at Pine Brook Apartments Saturday, Jarrod Jamar Thomas, displacing dozens of residents.

Reporter: Was it worth it?

Thomas: Um, probably,

Thomas says this all started over his emotions.

Reporter: Why did you feel this way?

Thomas: Um, I’m a very emotional guy when it comes to females so I mean like…

Reporter: So, this was over a girl?

Thomas: Not literally, but I mean…

Police say Thomas signed a confession admitting he set flames to his apartment around 3:30 Saturday morning. The blaze pushed more than 50 people out of their homes. displaced families like Derick and Ashley Chambers.

“We had to jump out of the balcony to get out,” displaced resident Derick Chambers said.

“All that was on my mind was get out alive and try to help somebody else if we could basically,” said displaced resident Ashley Chambers.

Reporter: Do you feel bad that these people who are out of their homes tonight?

Thomas: I mean not really because they could all be criminals. They could be in the same spot that I am in a nice bed in jail tonight.

While 22 year-old Thomas sleeps in a jail bed, his neighbors are forced into a shelter.

“Thank god we are still able to be alive to be able to start over again,” said Derick Chambers.

Police cuffed Thomas after a daylong search. Detectives tell Local 15 they thought he could have been dead, so they used cadaver dogs to search around the complex

Reporter: Do you feel bad?

Thomas: No, no

Police tell Local 15 Thomas' sisters turned him in. They found Thomas walking along the Dauphin Island Parkway,

Red Cross officials say the community can drop off donations to the Rev. Robert L. Hope Community Center.