Advanced Arson is Right Around the Corner!

Just a reminder that the Advanced Arson Class is coming in July from the 26th-28th at the Prescott Resort and Conference Center! This Year's seminar is packed with great content from many amazing speakers!

Registration for the conference includes dinner to our Annual Banquet and Awards Ceremony on Thursday, July 27th. Any extra guests, not registered for the conference, will be charged $25.00 each for the dinner.

*All other meals and accommodations are not include in the price of registration.*

You CANNOT afford to miss this training!!!! There will also be a board meeting on Tuesday night, July 25th, at 6pm. Check with the front desk for the meeting room location.


Day 1: Fire Dynamics, Ventilation, and Compartment Fire Dynamics

 Jonathan Butta, P.E. currently works as a Fire Research Engineer with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Fire Research Laboratory (FRL), located in Beltsville, MD. He graduated from the Department of Fire Protection Engineering at the University of Maryland with a Bachelor's of Science degree in May, 2012, and a Masters of Engineering in December of 2017. Jon has worked for the ATF FRL for over ten years, assisting with forensic laboratory fire testing and investigations. Jonathan is also a member of the ATF National Response Team (NRT), responding to large loss fire events throughout the United States.

This course addresses eight of the sixteen topics outlined in Section 1.3.7 of NFPA 1033 (Standard for Professional Qualifications for Fire Investigator) necessary to perform as a fire investigator. Basic scientific and engineering principles relating to fire dynamics are taught in conjunction with relevant case studies and practical demos.

This course begins with a review of the fundamentals of fire dynamics principles and builds upon that with an introduction to more advanced topics to include compartment fire dynamics, damage dynamics, and multiple interactive case studies. Damage dynamics is a methodology used to assist in determining the origin of a fire within a complex compartment based upon knowledge of available fuel locations, as well as the ventilation sources. The interactive case studies will allow groups of investigators to view photographs from complex training cells in order to make origin determinations. After the groups have determined an origin for each of the case studies, photos, video, and data collected during the fires will be presented to the group. 

Butane Hash Oil Fires

Gregory Lotoczky is an IAAI Certified Fire Investigator with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).  He is currently assigned as a full-time member of the ATF National Response Team and conducts fire investigations throughout the country and locally in the Flint, Michigan area.  He has investigated multiple fires involving the manufacture of Butane Hash Oil (BHO) and is currently conducting research into the failure modes of BHO production.   

Butane Hash Oil (BHO) is a recreational drug that has been in use for many years but has recently become more popular as State marijuana laws have been relaxed or repealed.  It goes by several names, such as “shatter” or “butane honey oil” but its composition is the same: high concentration tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in a solid or liquid phase.  THC is the active psychedelic ingredient in marijuana and is responsible for the high feeling that users experience.

Marijuana is collected in a vessel and butane is injected over the material.  The THC is pulled from the plant material and collected along with the butane.  Butane may leak from the apparatus or from the BHO product collected.  This fugitive butane, which is flammable, is then one spark away from becoming a large-scale explosion.   

Day 2: IAAI Investigation Incendiary and Explosive Devices

Jeffery Whitbeck, Arizona State Attorney’s Office, Danny R. Waltenbaugh, U.S. Department of Justice, ATF (Retired) and the ATF Phoenix Arson and Explosives Group. 

This course will cover origin and cause for Incendiary and Explosive Devices, Incendiary Devices, Explosive Devices and Effects, Device Reconstruction and Investigative Analysis, Practical Exercises, Courtroom Testimony and a number of in-depth studies. At the conclusion of this training you will be prepared to recognize and identify incendiary and explosive device evidence, recognize important investigative information/leads, as well as being better prepared to present Incendiary and explosive arsons in court. The presenters of this training have many years of experience investigating incendiary and explosives devices in U.S. courts (Federal and State). 

Course Synopsis Length 

Origin and Cause for Incendiary and Explosive Devices                    45 Minutes      
Incendiary Devices                                                                                   45 Minutes        
Explosive Devices                                                                                      45 Minutes         
Device Reconstruction and Investigative Analysis                              45 Minutes    
Device in a Box (Practical Exercises)                                                        1 hour      
Courtroom Testimony                                                                            45 Minutes  
Case Studies (3 cases X 15 minutes each)                                            45 Minutes

Day 3 (Morning): 

Emerging trend of Smart devices in the fire scene and a Improvised Incendiary Device Case Study

ATF SA/CFI Ken Pitney

Special Agent/Certified Fire Investigator Ken Pitney joined the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) in 2013 after spending 14 years in the Army. He completed 3 overseas combat deployments with the military. SA Pitney served in the ATF’s Puerto Rico Field Office, Cincinnati Field Office, and Dayton Satellite Office. He has been in the ATF Certified Fire Investigator (CFI) program since 2021 and also is an IAAI CFI. 

ATF Special Agent Ken Pitney will be presenting on the emerging trend of smart devices located in the fire scene. He will show what the devices are, what they do, and what they look like pre and post fire. Finally, SA Pitney will discuss what information can be obtained from these smart devices, how to obtain that information, and how it can assist us with the Origin & Cause determination.

Additionally, Ken Pitney will be presenting a case study that showcases a recent improvised incendiary device identified within the Fire Investigation field. 

Please use the link below for registration. We look forward to seeing you there!


 Arson 3 

Arson 3 will be held in Flagstaff October 15-20.  It will be at the Doubletree Hilton, 1175 W Route 66, Flagstaff, AZ.

Registration and Information

Arson 3 Agenda


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