Governor's Mansion Fire Politically Motivated

AUSTIN (AP) - Investigators say the arson at the Texas Governor's Mansion was politically motivated.  They're offering a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person who torched the 152-year-old executive mansion.

State Fire Marshal Paul Maldonado had said last week that investigators didn't believe the blaze was politically motivated. He said today he now believes differently.

He told reporters that the arsonist "may be known to get angry and express strong opinions about the government, Governor Perry himself, the death penalty, the renovation of the mansion or other political issues."

Speaking directly to the suspect, Maldonado said: "We do feel you had a message and we would like to hear from you. We're not quite sure what that message is, but please contact us."

He says officials aren't yet ready to release video footage of the alleged arsonist. But he says investigators are looking for a white male, between 5-feet-9 and 6-1, who was wearing a ball cap, a dark shirt, work-type gloves, blue jeans or cargo-style pants the night of the fire.

He says the man is probably physically fit because he was able to scale an 8-foot chain-link fence to enter the mansion grounds. Anyone with information should call Texas Crime Stoppers at 1-800-252-8477.