Investigators with the Valdosta Police Department and the Valdosta Fire Department are looking into the suspected burglary and arson of a Moody airman’s home that occurred this week.
At approximately 5 a.m. Monday, Sept. 9, police, firefighters and rescue teams responded to the home of Airman 1st Class Jonathan Santay on the 2400 block of Deborah Drive after a neighbor reported that the residence was on fire.
Valdosta Fire Department Capt. John Wisenbaker, the lead investigator in the arson case, said the house is a near total loss.
The home was being rented by Santay, who was in South Carolina visiting family with his wife for the weekend, according to a neighbor.
“When we reached Jonathan Santay by phone to discuss the items damaged by the fire, it became clear that some items were missing,” said Wisenbaker.
Police reports list $2,700 worth of property stolen from the house, including two televisions and three firearms: a 20-gauge shotgun, a silver .40-caliber Smith and Wesson handgun, and a .22-caliber handgun.
Police, fire and insurance officials were continuing Thursday to investigate the incident.
Meanwhile, the community has been making efforts to help the Air Force family.
Staff Sgt. Jamal Sutter with Moody AFB Public Affairs said a collection point has been established at a maintenance warehouse near base housing on Apollo Way to accept donations of clothes, furniture, appliances and other household goods. Any donations not used by the family will be given to the American Red Cross, the Haven and Goodwill.
Langdale Ford on West Magnolia Street is accepting donations on behalf of the family in the form of checks made out to the Santays.
Anyone having any further information regarding this case is urged to contact the Valdosta Police Department, (229) 293-3145; or can remain anonymous at (229) 293-3091.