Playa del Carmen, Q.R. – An intentionally set fire destroyed two eating establishments in central Playa del Carmen over the weekend, resulting in millions in damage.
During a routine patrol, Playa del Carmen’s tourist police spotted a person running from a recently ignited palapa belonging to La Perla restaurant. The suspect was chased down while the fire department was called to the scene.
The incident happened at around 4:30 a.m. on October 25 when routine police surveillance discovered the burning restaurant. Although the fire department were on hand quickly, La Perla was reduced to ashes, but not before destroying the roof of its neighboring eatery, Muelle 3.
According to information gathered at the scene, the intoxicated 28-year old suspect is a native of Chiapas and admitted he set fire to the palapa. He said he entered the establishment unseen by the night watchmen, but after lighting the palapa, was spotted by passing police which is why he began to run.
Local firefighters were unable to save La Perla, but were able to douse the flames before they consumed Muelle 3 and another restaurant, Axiote. The latter two eating establishments suffered major fire and water damage. Firefighters were on scene until 6:30 a.m. soaking rooftops and all wooden furniture to ensure no flare-ups. Civil Protection arrived to keep people back as well as prevent the curious from trying to drive by.
La Perla Restaurant owner, Alberto Leon Muertillo, suffered from shock upon seeing his restaurant and was attended to by paramedics. The man responsible for the fire was consigned to the Public Prosecutor’s Office.