NewsLocal News


VIDEO: Fire set to two Valley preschool buses as two people run between them

Two buses set on fire at Phoenix preschool
Posted at 9:33 PM, Jul 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-19 18:21:49-04

PHOENIX — Surveillance video, which you’ll see only on ABC15, captured the moment two school buses at Cactus Kids Preschool in Phoenix were set on fire.

The video even shows people running from the scene. The owner of the preschool talks about being left picking up the pieces.

The video shows what Jenell Jones saw on her security camera Saturday.

"I logged on and actually thought my lens was dirty. I kept looking and thought, oh my goodness, my buses are on fire,” said Jones.

Dazed and confused she awoke her husband. "He was like no, someone burned up the buses,” added Jones.

She showed ABC15 around the cage where the buses burned and left not much more than shells.

"It's hard because these buses were of value and now they are gone," Jones said.

Phoenix Fire says its fire investigation task force is working to find out what happened.

"We offer free preschool. We give quality meals. Why would you do this to children. Who does that,” asked Jones.

In addition to helping 120 families, she secured the bus cages, and added security cameras and lighting.

But, often, she finds herself talking with the city council and filing police reports to help keep away criminals.

"It was disappointing. We have been battling for so long,” added Jones.

Weeks ago, Jones says someone stole gas and a catalytic converter from her third bus. It's currently in the shop and waiting on parts.

"We don't have a way to get these children to and from school. They've been wanting to do field trips. We can't do field trips because our buses are burnt up,” added Jones.

On Saturday, Jones' security cameras captured two people, seen in the middle of the screen, running between the buses.

The owner of the preschool believes the people seen running in the video may have been siphoning gas from the buses. She points to the burned pliers and drill left on the ground underneath the gas tank.

"There is a good chance they are burned because, if they punctured that gas tank, gas had to come out at them,” added Jones.

Insurance adjusters, Jones says, don't expect a payout to even cover one bus.

"I go back and forth from just being discouraged and not wanting to do this anymore to saying okay we can just fight. But, I don't know what else I can do,” added Jones.

If you would like to help the Joneses with their financial loss, a GoFundMe account has been created.