Two teens charged with August arson
RIDGELY — Two Caroline County teenagers were arrested and charged with arson Wednesday, Aug. 29, after they allegedly set a portable toilet on fire at 142 Walmut Street in Ridgely.
According to the Office of the Maryland State Fire Marshal, the 15-year-old and 16-year-old each were charged with seconddegree arson, second-degree malicious burning and malicious destruction of property less than $1,000. Both teenagers were released to the custody of their parents. The charges will be forwarded to the Caroline County Department of Juvenile Services.
According to fire officials, the Ridgely Volunteer Fire Department responded to a fire early Wednesday morning after a neighbor observed an outside blaze but it had been extinguished prior to their arrival. Fire officials said a toilet had been intentionally set on fire.
A joint investigation began later the same day between patrol officers of the Ridgely Police Department and deputies with the Upper Eastern Regional Office of the State Fire Marshal.
According to the Office of the Maryland State Fire Marshal, the Lister Estates neighborhood had sustained a series of vandalism and destruction to personal property over a couple of nights, and the previous incidents had been under investigation by Ridgely police, which caused thousands of dollars worth of property damage throughout the neighborhood.
Fire officials said the two teenagers were responsible for the fire and other property damage.
The investigation remains ongoing.