Arson suspect caught red-shorted

A social media post with this photo reportedly helped detectives catch an arson suspect this week. Courtesy of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station
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A man suspected of setting a fire in the back of a Ralphs last week was arrested on Friday morning after Santa Clarita Valley sheriff’s deputies reportedly recognized his bright pink polka-dot shorts from an Instagram post.

The fire occurred at 2:18 a.m. on June 6 behind the Ralphs located at 27760 McBean Parkway in Valencia, according to Shirley Miller, spokeswoman for the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station.

Deputies released the suspect, identified as Spencer Greenberg, 29, of Valencia, the same morning of the fire, after he was arrested on suspicion of narcotics possession, according to Miller.

Later that same day, Greenberg was rearrested for the second time, again on suspicion of narcotics charges, while wearing his pink shorts and a dark-colored shirt, which led to an Instagram post by the Sheriff’s Station, documenting his distinctive clothing, according to another social media post from the sheriff’s station Friday night.

So when Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Arson and Explosive detectives sent out a bulletin to deputies a few days later, asking for their help in identifying their suspect, deputies were able to connect the dots, per the post.  

The bulletin included screenshots of the arson suspect, wearing the same bright pink shorts and dark-colored shirt, obtained from the store’s surveillance cameras, the post read.

With that information, arson detectives were able to continue with their investigation, and on Friday morning, Greenberg was located in Hawthorne and arrested for the third time in less than a week, this time on arson charges, according to Miller.

“The case will be presented to the District Attorney’s office on Tuesday for filing consideration,” Miller said.

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