A man who disappeared after a suspicious fire tore through a townhouse in Lorton, Virginia, is now being sought by fire officials.
Darren William Hinzman, 47, is a person of interest in the fire Friday on the 8500 block of Koluder Court in Lorton, the Fairfax County fire department said Monday.
Hinzman was last seen the night before the fire that destroyed one house, damaged two neighboring houses and displaced two neighbors.
Hinzman may be traveling with Donna Mae Metro Hinzman, who the fire department described as his "girlfriend/wife." Friends and family told officials they may be headed to Texas or Clearwater, Florida.
Fire officials said Friday that the fire was suspicious but declined to elaborate.
Several neighbors told News4 on Friday that they had seen the resident of the house that caught fire packing up the night before.
"He packed his stuff, and he was putting it on his truck. I asked him if he was moving and he said, 'No, we're not,'" one neighbor said. He asked that News4 withhold his name, for his safety.
That man was an officer at the Pentagon until last year, an official there confirmed. His house was under foreclosure, records show.
Fairfax County firefighters were called to the house about 1:45 a.m.
"It felt like an explosion. The whole house shook," a neighbor said.
Cellphone video from a neighbor shows flames shooting through the roof.
No one was injured, but a family in a neighboring townhouse was displaced by the damage. A third home also was scorched by the flames. The house that caught fire is a total loss, with about $219,000 worth of damage.
The cause of the fire is under investigation. Neighbors are suspicious.
"The stories that I've been hearing, the suspicions people have..." neighbor Brianna Williams said. "It's not just an accident."
Anyone with information for the Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department is asked to call 571-221-1049.