Police: DC man used charcoal briquettes to torch Georgetown home; suspect charged

A D.C. man has been arrested and charged with arson after police say he set fire to a home in Georgetown on Monday using charcoal briquettes. (Courtesy D.C. Fire and EMS)

A D.C. man has been arrested and charged with arson after police say he set fire to a home in Georgetown on Monday using charcoal briquettes.

Samuel Carey Kalinski, 26, of Northwest, was arrested following the blaze in the 3200 block of S Street Northwest near the Dumbarton Oaks Museum.

According to a D.C. police report, Kalinski jumped a fence to get to the property and kicked in the back door around 1 p.m.

“Small piles of barbecue charcoal briquettes were placed in areas to spread the fire,” the report said.

According to D.C. Fire and EMS spokesman Vito Maggiolo, by the time firefighters arrived, serious damage had been done to the first floor and was spreading to the second floor.

Despite the fire’s strength, Maggiolo said crews were able to contain the fire about 20 minutes after their arrival. Maggiolo also said no one was home at the time of the fire and no one was injured in the blaze.

Kalinski was spotted watching the house burn, according to Maggiolo. He tried to leave and was pursued by fire investigators and arrested.

Evidence and video surveillance is still being collected.

Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Editor and reporter for WTOP.com. He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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