Release Number: 11-307
Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office
Investigative Operations Bureau
-Arson and Auto Theft Unit
Patrol Operations Bureau
Clearwater Fire Rescue
Desmond Thumbtzen (Arrested)
Address: 2796 Robinwood Drive, Clearwater
Arrested for arson, discharge of a firearm, animal cruelty, and an unrelated VOP battery.
What: The suspect who overnight fired multiple shots in an unincorporated Clearwater neighborhood has also now been arrested for setting fire to his home.
Where: Deputies initially responded to the area of the Sylvan Abbey Memorial Cemetery and then to the private residence located at 2796 Robinwood Drive in Clearwater.
When: Deputies responded to the shots fired call at about 12:44 a.m. on Wednesday, December 28, 2011.
According to deputies, the response initiated after several neighbors reported hearing multiple shots fired in the area. Deputies initially Deputies say a male suspect was seen coming out of the garage of the home located at 2796 Robinwood Drive in unincorporated Clearwater. He was armed and fired several shots.
Deputies also summoned detectives assigned to the Arson and Auto Theft Unit to investigate the fire.
Through their investigation, detectives determined that the suspect set multiple fires inside the residence, causing the structure to become fully engulfed in flames. Detectives say the fires were started during the time frame in which deputies were present and responding to the shots fired call.
Detectives found multiple weapons in the home to include rifles and shotguns. They also located handgun casings in the home. Spent shell casings were located both inside and outside the residence.
Thumbtzen was arrested for arson. He was also arrested for animal cruelty as a dead bird (a large green parrot) was found inside the home. Two dogs and a cat that were also in the home at the time of the incident were unharmed.
The motive is undetermined at this time.
Detectives say the suspect may have been under the influence of narcotics and or alcohol.
The investigation continues.