Called "The most prolific serial arsonist of the twentieth century," I learned of the accusation while perusing documents related to my case in 1997. I sat in the Los Angeles County Jail. After arrest, conviction and imprisonment for over five years, such statements still hurt me; this one in particular. The reference of "...most prolific..." appeared in a handwritten note in the margin of a case clearance sheet filled out by L.A. City Fire Department arson investigator Glen Lucero. The scratching appeared to match Lucero's writing but there were eight investigators assigned to the task force prosecuting me. The speculative script should have a question mark at the end. The sheet was followed by no less than twelve reports of arson fires occurring in the Hollywood, California area in the mid- to late-1980's. Lucero closed the cold cases a month before his retirement, arbitrarily blaming me for setting the fires; some of them ten years after the occurrence. There was no evidence I set any of the blazes, no witnesses placed me at the fire scenes, and Lucero never queried me about any of the arsons. Most were set in carports and garages in the shabbier areas of Hollywood; actually, in the mid-1980's all Tinseltown appeared seedy. Had Lucero ever bothered asking me if I appeared at any of the fire scenes, my answer might have resulted in 8-10 additional felony charges against me. My answer would have been, "Yes." Gen Lucero, like most of the federal, state, and local investigators assigned to the task force, was a dedicated, honest law enforcer. Glen attended classes I taught. I shared cocktails and meals with him. He and his lovely wife came to a 1989 Christmas party at my home. Closing cold cases and blaming the felonies on a suspect, without evidence, is called Clearing by Exception (CBE). CBE is law enforcement's equivalent of giving away a 15-year-old derelict car sitting in your backyard, through a newspaper ad. Pretty the beast up cosmetically and peddle it like it's a cream puff. CBE requires only the barest of statements to hang the crime on your designated suspect. Similar to the used car blurb, "Like new, runs great!" really means, "When you can actually get the beast started..." Lucero's margin notes declaring me "the most prolific serial arsonist..." were as useless as the CBE sheet's spiel, "This fire attributed to convicted serial arsonist John L. On due to similar m.o." The declaration is meaningless, the conclusion unsupported, but you managed to move the dilapidated Gremlin out of the backyard. Unfortunately, many police agencies actually pad their annual clearance statistics using the CBE method. I suppose Lucero looked pretty good the year he CBE'd his in-box by blaming me for a collection of his unsolved cases and at the same time starting the "...most prolific..." theory. My answer of "yes" to the question of my appearance at one of Lucero's Hollywood/CBE fire scenes was simply explained and documented in the vast repository of my case. Lucero had access to the documents. Retained by an insurance company to evaluate the two-day-old fire scene, a private investigator I lived with asked me to run down to Hollywood on a Saturday and do the exam for him. I agreed and made $250 for a thirty-minute scene check, a few photos, and a report. Pretty good money in 1985 dollars. While at that scene, a resident told me of several similar fires in Hollywood. I later incorporated this scenario in my fact-based¬fictional novel, Points of Origin. I believe Lucero read my manuscript and decided I set all his Hollywood fires based on my inclusion of actual incidents. Had Lucero thoroughly examined my case files he would have found the reference to the insurance company report and my time sheet/request-for-payment with the Hollywood address. A cross-referencing of times/dates of my files also revealed I was on an all-night surveillance, with a partner, at the time of that Hollywood fire — verifiable documented alibi.