Crime alert: possible arson in Ishbel Lane and a fire in Wellesley Park

Crime Alert Issues Safety and Security

Crime alert: possible arson in Ishbel Lane and a fire in Wellesley Park

Our friends at the Aberdeen Avenue Residents’ Group (AARG) ( have informed us that there was a fire in Ishbel Lane sometime during the night of Saturday February 25 or early hours of Sunday February 26. Ishbel Lane is located off of Aberdeen Avenue near Parliament Street. The pictures below show some of the damage and evidence of other small fires that appear to have been intentionally set in the lane recently – a second incident occurred approximately one week ago.

The fire was captured on surveillance video and it was reported that the flames were as high as 30 feet in the air. Police have been notified and were given additional information on a possible suspect to assist them with their inquiries.

A third incident reported to us February 15 was of evidence of a small fire being set in Wellesley Park near the splashpad but it did not seem to be a case of someone trying to burn down a structure. Photos are included below.

These images are from Wellesley Park from February 15, 2017

Further to this incident, the AARG posted this message containing some tips.

Captain Jon Lasiuk of Toronto Fire Services has some helpful information following the Ishbel Lane fire. If you are alarmed by unusual behaviour in any our area lane ways please call 911.

“I just wanted to add some information for your readers. While I wasn’t involved in investigating that fire, and don’t know the cause, residents should know that rear laneway arsons are relatively common in Toronto. They are almost always crimes of opportunity.

Residents can lessen the risk to their property by keeping their garage doors and rear gates locked at all times. Keep garbage and recycling bins inside a locked area as they are a common source of fuel for arson fires.

Keep the rear of your property clear of loose combustibles (cardboard boxes, overflowing bins, etc.). A clean laneway will send the message that the property is watched over. This may deter those with intent.

From experience, most laneway fires occur after dark. Often the suspect is found to be a lone male, not necessarily badly dressed. Don’t hesitate to report anyone seen prowling by night in the rear laneways.

If you would like more information on fire prevention hints, or if you have an ongoing problem with combustibles that are not being cleaned up, call Toronto Fire Services at 416-338-9000.”

1 reply on “Crime alert: possible arson in Ishbel Lane and a fire in Wellesley Park”

There is often evidence of small fires having been set in Riverdale West park. People had a book burning recently at the base of a tree near Carlton leaving charred pages and other burnt stuff for us to find in the morning. There was a charred log hanging out recently at the corner of Carlton and Sumach….

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