DARKE COUNTY – The Darke County Crime Stoppers are offering a cash reward of up to $1,000 to aid in the arrest of a suspect(s) responsible for a rash of arson fires that have plagued the county over the past week.
In addition to the Crime Stoppers reward, the State Fire Marshal’s Office has posted a Blue Ribbon Reward of up to $5,000 for a fire that destroyed a vacant home at 2585 Hollansburg-Richmond Road near the Village of Hollansburg and the fires set at the Greenville locations.
The Hollansburg blaze occurred in the early morning hours of May 31 and was discovered as firefighters and deputies were on the scene of a truck fire nearby. According to the Darke County Sheriff’s Office, the vehicle fire is not confirmed to be connected to the house fire, but they are not ruling it out. The house was vacant at the time of the fire and has been ruled arson.
According to investigators, the ruling came after burn patterns at the site were consistent with the fire being intentionally set. Lab testing is being done to determine if and what type of accelerant may have been used to ignite the fire in the one-story brick home.
Just a few days later, the City of Greenville Fire Department responded to a series of fires in and around detached garages in the early morning hours of June 3 that have been ruled arson as well.
First was a barn and neighboring garage behind 311 E. Fourth St. at approximately 1:44 a.m. At 3:33 a.m. the department was dispatched to a fire behind 315 N. Main St. for a report of materials adjacent to a detached garage burning. Finally, Greenville firefighters responded to a fire behind 108 Sweitzer St. at approximately 3:58 a.m. were one garage was destroyed and two other building were damaged.
According to Assistant Chief David McDermitt, the State Fire Marshal’s Office has been contacted regarding these intentionally set fires and have also issued a Blue Ribbon Reward of up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest, conviction of a suspect(s).
“We hope the reward money will give an incentive for someone to call and do the right thing,” stated a member of Crime Stoppers. “We want to see this stopped before someone gets hurt.”
If you have any information about any of the fires listed contact Det. Corey Turner at the Darke County Sheriff’s Office, 548-2020, Det. Eric Roberts at the Greenville Police Department, 548-4150, or the Darke County Crime Stoppers’ private Tipline at 547-1661 or online at darkecountycrimestoppers.com/tips.