Four connected to string of arsons in west Georgia -, GA News Weather & Sports

Four connected to string of arsons in west Georgia

From the Troup County Sheriff's Office

TROUP COUNTY, GA - Sheriff Donny Turner announces that the Troup County Sheriff's Office has executed six search warrants while developing leads in the case of several arsons in the Mountville Community, of rural Troup County.

As a result, four arrests have been made.

On 5/30/11, at approximately 3:18 am, Troup County E-911 received a report of a
house fire at 1399 Hines Road.

While en route to the address from Hogansville, the Troup County Fire Department encountered a fully-involved house fire at 2503 Mountville-Hogansville Road.

Another Fire station, responding from the Mountville area, discovered a house fire in the 4400 block of Greenville Road (S.R. 109).

Troup County Sheriff's Deputies responding to the call found a fourth house fire, at a vacant residence, at 24 Mountville-Chipley Road. The fifth home at 177 Mountville-Big Springs Road was discovered at 4:24 a.m.

Georgia State Arson Investigators later determined that all five fires had been set; and,
were declared the result of Arson.

On Tuesday (6/7/11), a home owner from the Mountville Community returned to discover fire damage had occurred to the rear of her residence on Thrash Road. This home is in close proximity to the other house fires which were determined to be the result of Arson (between the fourth and fifth house fires). It is believed to have occurred during the same time frame as the five other fires.

This house fire was short-lived, and had extinguished itself prior to being discovered.

Sheriff Turner continues "After our investigation began, we received several Crime
Stoppers tips pertaining to the fires.

We diligently followed each lead. Information provided led us to a person of interest, who was determined to be the home owner of the residence that was burned at 177 Mountville-Big Springs Road."

That person of interest owned the home, but did not reside at the residence. The home
had been occupied by three adult females and four children.
According to their own account, the residents were not at home during the time of the fire. They further stated that they were in attendance at a Memorial Day Weekend party in LaGrange.

Sheriff Turner adds "In the midst the investigation, we learned that this house had a
large amount of accelerants placed inside the residence. It was further revealed,
through our investigation, that a number of parties had insurance policies on the home
at 177 Mountville-Big Springs Road and its contents."

One such policy belonged to an individual who did not even reside there. The total amount of all policies pertaining to the residence and its contents equal approximately $235,425.00. The policies acquired by the home owner, alone, amount to $138,425.00.

On Monday (6/13/11), our investigation led to the Odessadale Community (within
Meriwether County) where the execution of a search warrant revealed items belonging
to residents of the 177 Mountville-Big Springs Road had recently been stored.

The items consisted of belongings from all three residents (i.e. important personal documents,
diplomas, bills, pictures, appliances, medication, baby clothing, shoes, etc.). The finding
conflicted with statements previously given by the residents to the effect of their "losing

Statements derived from interviews with the homeowner of 177 Mountville-Big Springs
Road, alleged that he was at his permanent residence in Statesboro, Georgia during the
time of the fire. Further investigation indicated that this statement was untrue.

Troup County Sheriff's Office Investigators can place the homeowner on Greenville Road (S.R.
109) at approximately 4:14 a.m. on the morning of the fires (May 30th), ten minutes
prior to the fire at his house being discovered on the same morning (at 4:24 a.m.).

As a result of our investigation, Reginald Robertson, the owner of the residence at 177
Mountville-Big Springs Road was arrested at his place of employment in Evans County,
Georgia on 6/16/11. Robertson is being charged with Arson in the First Degree, with
the likelihood of more charges to follow.

Erica Williams, Maxine Cameron and Vitina Robertson (the residents of 177 Mountville-
Big Springs Road) have also been arrested in relation to this case. They are being
charged with party to the crime of Arson in the First Degree due to their prior
knowledge of the fire, as indicated by the removal of their belongings from the
residence prior to the fire.

Sheriff Turner concludes that as the investigation continues, "The connection with the
other five fires is being thoroughly examined. If a link is determined to exist among the
fires, further charges of Aggravated Assault concerning the Hines Road fire (where two
victims were present) and Insurance Fraud may ensue."

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