Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

By Ricardo Santiago
LA County District Attorney Office 

Armed Arsonist Pleads No Contest for Century City Mayhem Last September

The defendant entered a book store at the mall, walked to the children's section and set books on fire, then turned a gun on an employee

 

December 8, 2020

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Nicholas Kyle Oates set children's books on fire and then turned a gun on an employee; it took a day to find and arrest him.

A 27-year-old Missouri man pleaded no contest today to setting a fire inside the Westfield Century City Mall last year, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office announced Friday.

Nicholas Kyle Oates, 27 entered the plea to one count each of arson and assault with a firearm and admitted an allegation of personally using a firearm.

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Westfield Century City Mall, as it looked last September

Deputy District Attorney Joy Roberts of the Arson and Explosives Unit said Oates was immediately sentenced to seven years and four months in state prison.

On March 15, 2019, the defendant entered a book store at the mall, walked to the children's section and set books on fire. An employee confronted Oates who then pulled out a handgun on the employee.

Oates then lit additional items in the store on fire and fled the scene, the prosecutor said. He was found and arrested a day later in Venice.

News of a loose armed man in the mall snarled traffic for hours in West Los Angeles.

Case SA100160 was investigated by the Los Angeles Police Department Major Crimes Division, Criminal Conspiracy Section and the Los Angeles Fire Department Arson Unit.

 

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