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A five-bedroom, five-bathroom Falls Church home that has a history of arson caught fire early Friday morning for the third time in three years.

The home, located in the 2100 block of Haycock Road, near Haycock Elementary School and the intersection of Westmoreland and Haycock Road, is up for sale and unoccupied. Fairfax County records show the property is owned by Lawrence C. O’Conner of McLean. Messages left for O’Conner were not immediately returned.

According to firefighters and county records, the home caught fire twice before. The first time was in November 2010, while it was still under construction. During the 2010 blaze, firefighters said they used defensive measures to protect adjacent homes, but that one neighboring home still received minor heat damage as a result of the fire.

Damage in that blaze was deemed by fire investigators to be a total loss, valued at $1 million.

“The cause of that fire was undetermined,” said Fairfax County Fire and Rescue spokesman Dan Schmidt.

The house caught fire again in July 2012. That time, fire officials deemed the blaze to be arson.

According to fire officials, firefighters who battled the 2012 blaze reported light smoke coming from the top floor of the two-story home upon their arrival. They quickly extinguished the fire and reported the home was vacant and that there were no injuries. Damage was estimated at $25,000. A sign was posted on the property stating that the fire department suspected the fire was caused by arson. “No doubt about it this time,” said Schmidt following that fire. “This time we know the fire was intentionally set and if we find out who did it, we will bring charges.” A suspect was never charged.

During the 2012 fire, the home again was under construction but, unlike the last time, it already was for sale — listed at that time for $1.7 million with Washington Fine Properties, LLC.

“We put this property on the market before it was completed because with a property like this, customers often want to do some customizing,” said WFP real estate agent Cynthia Howar immediately following that fire.

This week, at around 3 a.m. on Dec. 20, firefighters were called again to the home.

“We were called out to the home which was on fire. It was a two-alarm fire,” said Fairfax County Fire & Rescue spokesman Capt. William Moreland. “It is too early to estimate monetary damages, but overall damage to the home was pretty extensive. The home was unoccupied and there were no injuries, but because of the home’s history, investigators are going through this investigation very thoroughly.”

The 4,147-square-foot home is currently listed with Weichert Realtors for $1.4 million. Real estate agent Raymond A. Zakka did not immediately return messages left for him. On Zakka’s website, where the home is listed, it states that the median home value in Falls Church is $400,000, well below the county median home value of $557,800.



gmacdonald@fairfaxtimes.com