By Rachel Menitoff

LAUREL, MD. (WJZ) — The daughter of a former Laurel police chief arrested and charged in connection with a series of arsons is speaking out for the first time.

WJZ’s Rachel Menitoff sat down with her and explains what the last few months have been like for her and her family.

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Carrie Turner said she had mixed emotions when her dad was arrested on those charges. On the one hand, she was relieved, on the other, there was an element of sadness because after all, that is her father.

“I feel like finally it’s safe for me to speak out,” Turner said.

She said now that her father is behind bars, charged with attempted first-degree murder and arson, she finally feels safe to share her story.

WJZ’s Rachel Menitoff: “What was your reaction when you found out about your father’s alleged criminal behavior?” 

“I was…disappointed but not surprised….but, you know it’s still my dad, so there’s varying emotions,” Turner said.

She first learned about her dad’s alleged criminal past, when detectives showed up at her office.

“They asked me, if I thought my father was vindictive, and I said yes,” Turner said.

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Police said David Crawford intentionally set dozens of fires across county lines, and that there’s surveillance video to prove it.

Police said he targeted people he’d argued with.

Turner said that even she was a target of her father, and that years ago after a string of frightening and unsolved attacks at her own home, in an effort to keep her daughter safe, she signed over custody to get the person she now believes orchestrated it all.

And now, she’s trying to get her daughter back.

If you read the statement and the police reports all of the crimes are very similar, they were done at the same times of night and all done in a very vindictive manner,” said attorney David Ruben.

Carrie also shared a direct message with her dad’s alleged victims.

“We stand in solidarity with you and we do not condone these crimes in any way,” she said.

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In an email, Crawford’s attorney said Crawford is detained and cannot have in-person contact with the children.

Rachel Menitoff