PRESS RELEASE: Farmington man arrested for arson

RAY MONTANO MUGFarmington, NM – Farmington police arrested Ray Montano, 49 of Farmington, on Monday in connection with a string of fires that investigators determined to be intentionally set. Six structure fires took place between June 22 and July 7 in various abandoned buildings in Farmington. The San Juan County Fire Investigation Task Force, comprised of representatives from FPD, Farmington Fire Department, San Juan County Fire Department and the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office, investigated the incidents and found them to be arson.

Farmington detectives identified Montano as the suspect through video surveillance and body camera footage from officers who saw the suspect riding a bicycle away from the scene of two of the fires. Officers located Montano on July 8 and detained him for questioning. He was subsequently arrested on a warrant for three counts of arson at 709 Orchard Homes Dr., 301 Airport Dr. and 621 W. Animas St. No one was injured in the fires.

The three other fires remain under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Farmington Police Department Detective Tip Hotline at 505-599-1068. Anonymous tips may be submitted to San Juan County Crime Stoppers at 505-334-TIPS.