Hillman Man Convicted of Setting Own House on Fire
LITTLE FALLS (AP) — A Hillman man whose home was facing foreclosure has been convicted of setting the house on fire in 2010 for the insurance money.
Jurors deliberated for four hours this week before finding 53-year-old Randy Donald Reed guilty of first-degree arson. He’s scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 9.
Prosecutors say a fire marshal concluded that the cause of the fire was a butane torch. The investigator told authorities it appeared the torch was used to ignite gasoline at four different spots in the basement.
Reed told investigators he had no idea who would have wanted to commit the arson. He also acknowledged that he and the property’s co-owner were behind on their mortgage.
Defense attorney Mark Kelly of St. Paul said Saturday his client was wrongfully convicted based on circumstantial evidence.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.