ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A Rockford woman with repeated past arson offenses faces numerous new charges after allegedly setting multiple fires inside a high-rise apartment complex and then making threats to investigators.
According to the Rockford Police Department, first responders were summoned to a fire at the Oleson Plaza apartment building, at 511 N. Main Street on Monday, October 16th around 6:11 a.m.
Firefighters found five separate fires within the building, on the third, sixth, and eighth floors.
While police were on the scene, Sally Coleman, 56, reportedly began threatening bystanders and the fire department’s arson investigator.
Authorities said the building’s surveillance system showed Coleman lighting the fires using a hair spray can and a lighter.
Police also said Coleman has a past criminal history of aggravated arson and residential arson, along with domestic battery and aggravated battery.
She was arrested and charged with Arson to Personal Property, Aggravated Arson, Criminal Damage to Property, and Threatening a Public Official.
While in a police interrogation room, she allegedly spat at three officers and incurred the added charge of Aggravated Battery to a Police Officer.
Police said the damages to the building were in excess of $20,000.
Under the Pretrial Fairness Act, a judge determined that Coleman was a “real and present threat” to the safety of the community and ordered her held in jail.