Albuquerque home destroyed in fire, man detained

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A large fire destroyed a two-story home in the Huning Highlands neighborhood Friday morning.

Albuquerque Fire Rescue crews responded to the fire around 6 a.m. Friday near Gold and High Street. Crews put out the fire in about 30 minutes, but the home was destroyed.

The Albuquerque Police Department has a man detained – Sly Jones, a suspected arsonist. He was previously arrested for other fires in the same historic neighborhood.

Albuquerque police arrested Jones just a few days ago for multiple charges, including an arson charge. Judge Yvette Gonzales found he wasn’t a risk and released him.

APD had arrested Jones in April of 2021 for setting a dumpster fire downtown and throwing rocks at the man who called 911. 

Three months later, in July 2021, they arrested him again after another large dumpster fire. A judge found Jones incompetent and dismissed that felony charge.

On Friday, multiple witnesses in the neighborhood told authorities that they saw Jones fleeing the scene of the fire. The fire even damaged homes nearby.

“The crews on site did a great job protecting the surrounding structures that were occupied,” said AFR Lt. Jason Fejer. “Even though this one was under renovation and no one occupied it at the time, the fact they were able to save the surrounding houses – they did a great job.”

Investigators are coordinating with the district attorney’s office on next steps.

AFR Chief Emily Jaramillo shared the following statement:

“Thanks to the swift action of AFR personnel on scene, the extensive fire was quickly mitigated to prevent further damage. We appreciate the coordinated effort between AFR Fire Investigations and APD that led to the detention of Mr. Jones.”