Suspect in custody after multiple arsons in Mason City

Zachary Bruce Sankey
Zachary Bruce Sankey(Cerro Gordo County)
Published: Feb. 28, 2023 at 1:34 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 28, 2023 at 4:39 PM CST
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MASON CITY, Iowa (KTTC) – The Mason City Fire and Police Departments responded to numerous fire calls Tuesday morning.

According to Mason City Police Department, the calls occurred between 5:22 a.m. and 7:15 a.m. at multiple locations in Mason City including:

  • 5:22 a.m. - 324 S Kentucky Avenue - garage fire
  • 5:30 a.m. - Birch Dr and North Rhode Island - brush fire
  • 6:25 a.m. - Arona Home Essentials, 3701 4th Street SW - vehicle fire
  • 6:45 a.m. - Brother Ace Hardware, 440 S Illinois Ave. - structure fire
  • 7:15 a.m. - Gracious Estates, 777 S Eisenhower Ave. - structure fire

The Mason City Fire Department responded to each call as they were reported to the dispatch center with the assistance of Clear Lake Fire Department and Ambulance responding for mutual aid.

No injuries were reported at any of the incidents.

At 7:41 a.m., Zachary Bruce Sankey, age 38, of Mason City, was taken into custody by law enforcement officers. At that time, he was identified as the suspect in the fire at Brothers Ace Hardware.

Sankey was taken to the Cerro Gordo County Jail and charged with 3rd Degree Burglary and 2nd Degree Arson for that fire. He remains in custody at this time.

MCFD and MCPD are asking for the public’s help with this investigation. If you live, work or travel through the areas of one of these fires and saw suspicious activity or have video recordings between 3:49 a.m. and 7:41 a.m. that may be useful to the investigation, please contact the Mason City Police Department Criminal Investigation Division at 641-421-3636.

MCPD released a photo of Sankey as he appeared Tuesday morning when officers took him into custody. See below.

Zachary Bruce Sankey
Zachary Bruce Sankey(Mason City Police Department)

MCFD and MCPD were assisted in this response and investigation by the Clear Lake Fire Department, the Iowa State Fire Marshal’s Office, and the Iowa State Patrol.