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Pa. teen faces arson charges in Block Co. fire

July 23, 2002|by MARLO BARNHART

Quick action Sunday night by firefighters spared major damage to a shed next to Hagerstown Block Co. and led to the apprehension of a 15-year-old Greencastle, Pa., boy seen riding away from the scene of the fire on a bicycle.

Deputy Maryland State Fire Marshals charged the teen with second-degree arson for the attempted burning of the shed. He was also charged with first-degree malicious burning for the destruction of a $65,000 dump truck parked next to the shed.

The boy was taken to the Juvenile Holdover Center on Jonathan Street and later released to the custody of his parents.

Halfway Volunteer Fire Co. responded to the 10:20 p.m. blaze at 145 Hump Road along with units from the Hagerstown Fire Department. It was quickly determined that two separate fires had been set - one in the cab of the truck and one in the shed.

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A window of the truck had been broken out to gain access to the inside of the cab, fire marshals said.

While the truck was a loss, the shed damage was limited to the door, fire marshals said. Attempts to combine combustibles and flammable liquids to torch the shed failed.

Witnesses spotted the boy leaving the scene on his bicycle and he was photographed by fire police, fire marshals said.

A short time later, the boy was located, identified and apprehended on West Washington Street in Hagerstown.

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