Addison man charged with arson after allegedly setting car on fire


Bond was set at $500,000 Aug. 3 for an Addison man accused of setting fire to an acquaintance’s car that was parked just feet from an occupied apartment building, authorities said.

Ernesto Hernandez, 34, of the 100 block of South Villa Avenue, is charged with one count of aggravated arson, a Class X felony, and one count of arson, according to a DuPage County State’s Attorney’s Office news release.

About 2:30 a.m. Aug. 2, the Addison Fire Protection District responded to a call in the 100 block of South Villa Avenue for a report of a car on fire. After an investigation, Addison police identified Hernandez as the individual who allegedly set the car on fire, according to the release.

Before the fire department’s arrival, Hernandez allegedly approached the car, a 2007 Mazda 3, lit a paper napkin doused with STP motor oil on fire and threw the napkin through an open window of the car causing major damage to both the car and the nearby apartment building, according to the release.

About 12:30 p.m. Aug. 2, Addison police conducted a traffic stop on a car occupied by Hernandez as it left the apartment complex. He was arrested at that time without incident.

“To say the allegations against Mr. Hernandez are extremely disturbing would be an understatement,” DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert Berlin said in the release. “The type of dangerous, life-threatening behavior alleged in this case will not be tolerated in DuPage County and will be aggressively prosecuted. We are extremely grateful that no innocent people were injured or worse as a result of Mr. Hernandez’s alleged actions.”

Hernandez’s next court appearance is scheduled for Aug. 30 for arraignment.