City of Sacramento Police Department

Chief of Police
5770 Freeport Blvd., Suite 100
Sacramento, CA  95822-3516

(916) 808-0800
Fax : (916) 808-0818


For Immediate Release No. 20120427-060
Friday, April 27, 2012

Sacramento Police Work in Partnership to Convict Arsonist

On April 26, 2012, a Sacramento Jury with less than one day of deliberation, found Robert Durst, age 46, a resident of Sacramento guilty of arson, burglary, theft of property, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

On July 5, 2010, at approximately 1:30 a.m., Durst took a candle from his home and placed it inside his neighbor's vacant house.  He then turned on the gas valve in the kitchen.  Approximately 8 ½ hours later, Sacramento firefighters responded to a call reporting a gas leak.  When they opened the structure for ventilation, the oxygen entered the gas laden house, causing the candle to ignite the gas in the home, which resulted in a massive explosion.  Three firefighters were significantly burned and another suffered serious injuries. 

This investigation was conducted by the Sacramento Police Department in conjunction with Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Investigators with the Sacramento Fire Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Rod Norgaard. 

Durst is expected to be sentenced May 24, 2012 at 9:00 a.m. in Department 16 of the Sacramento Superior Court.

Sacramento Police Media Relations · (916) 808-0808 ·

The Mission of the Sacramento Police Department is to work in partnership with the Community to
protect life and property, solve neighborhood problems, and enhance the quality of life in our City.