After a man was evicted from his home in Sharpsburg, Maryland, he may have decided to take out his misplaced anger in an illegal fashion. Allegedly, he fought the eviction by starting fires in his former residence. The man has been charged with multiple crimes including arson.
The fire department responded to the blaze with nearly 50 firefighters on the scene. They worked for about 90 minutes to control the fire. One of the firefighters who responded to the emergency call was hurt as he worked. He was rushed to a nearby medical facility for burns to his face and eyes.
The defendant has been accused of intentionally destroying property. In addition, he faces arson charges and could face criminal charges for the injuries that the firefighter experienced. The firefighter might need surgery and will need to cope with recovery, which could be time-consuming and expensive.
The state of Maryland views arson as a serious crime. Someone who commits first-degree arson can receive as much as 30 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. The courts consider it first-degree arson if the building is considered a residence when the fire is started. No one needs to be in the building at the time of the fire for the building to qualify as a residence. Second-degree arson refers to starting a fire of an unoccupied structure. Some law enforcement agencies in the state devote entire units to its investigation. The complexity of arson cases may require the expertise of a criminal defense lawyer who has worked on these types of cases.
Source: Delmarvanow.com, “Man charged with setting fires in former home,” Sept. 25, 2012