Bay Area/ San Jose/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on April 12, 2024
San Jose State Student Charged with Arson for Fires at Martin Luther King Jr. LibrarySource: Daderot, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

San Jose State University student Amogh Upadhya was arrested and charged with arson following a series of fires on the college campus, authorities confirmed. On March 31 and April 8, blazes were deliberately set in the Martin Luther King Jr. Library at SJSU, prompting a swift response from campus police and CAL FIRE. After thorough investigations, Upadhya, a sophomore at SJSU, was cuffed and hit with four counts of arson, as reported by CAL_FIRE on X.

The pursuit of the suspect seemed to have swiftly turned around as Upadhya was booked into the Santa Clara County Jail, being held on a hefty $400,000 bail. A court hearing was scheduled for today, April 12, but details of the proceeding have not yet been released. This comes after CAL FIRE and SJSU Police worked tirelessly to canvass the area, scour security footage, and gather leads that would ultimately zero in on Upadhya as their prime suspect.

Prior to the arrest, the search for the suspected arsonist garnered significant attention, with CAL FIRE releasing a description of the person believed to have caused the March 31 fire. The description included notable details such as a black hoodie, mirrored sunglasses, and a prominently visible red lighter, according to our earlier reporting here on Hoodline San Jose. Thankfully, those specifics are no longer necessary for the public to remain alert, as the suspect is now behind bars awaiting their fate in court.

The CAL FIRE – OSFM Arson and Bomb Unit emphasized their dedication to helping agencies across California, ready to assist "no matter the size of the department, location, or the time of day or night," signaling a firm stance against such criminal activities. Those with further information are encouraged to contact authorities to ensure a comprehensive case moving forward.