Toomer's corner tree fire case sent to grand jury Wednesday - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Toomer's corner tree fire case sent to grand jury Wednesday

Jochen Wiest, 29 (Source: Auburn Police Department) Jochen Wiest, 29 (Source: Auburn Police Department)

AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - The suspect accused of intentionally lighting the fire at Toomer's Corner was not at the Lee Co. Justice Center for his preliminary hearing Wednesday. 

Jochen Wiest's attorney represented him at the hearing, and the case was sent to a grand jury. 

Wiest is being charged with first-degree criminal mischief, a felony, in addition to the desecration of a venerated object and public intoxication charges.

Wiest was identified as the person who, officials say, set fire to the draped toilet paper at one of the newly-planted oak trees at Auburn's famed Toomer's Corner after the LSU game. 

Wiest was in the United States on a work visa but has now been ordered to not leave the state. Wiest worked at Baxter Manufacturing Plant in Opelika. 

He planned to leave the U.S. to return to his native Germany on Friday and return in late November. 

Auburn Police, working in conjunction with Auburn University and officials within the school’s horticultural department, determined that damage to the oak tree exceeds $15,000

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