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State Fire Marshal: Argument over stimulus check becomes heated, leads to arrest on arson charges

5 months 1 week 1 hour ago Tuesday, April 21 2020 Apr 21, 2020 April 21, 2020 6:28 AM April 21, 2020 in News
Source: WBRZ
Marvin Smith Jr. Photo: Office of Louisiana State Fire Marshal

HAMBURG - Officials with the Louisiana State Fire Marshal's office say a 51-year-old Avoyelles Parish man set fire to his mother's property due to 'not receiving a check from the government’s COVID-19 stimulus program.'

Marvin Smith Jr. was booked into the Avoyelles Parish Jail on one count of Simple Arson after allegedly setting his mother's shed on fire last Friday afternoon.

First responders with the Moreauville Fire Department were quick to extinguish the fire, which they say took place within the 800 block of Old Highway 1 in Hamburg.

After investigators with the State Fire Marshal's office were called in to analyze the case, they discovered that shortly before the fire, Smith and his mother had been arguing over his stimulus check status.

Witnesses indicated that moments before the shed burst into flames, Smith was inside and shortly afterwards, he was spotted fleeing the area with the use of a recreational vehicle.

The Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office later took custody of Smith, who they say was armed with a knife.

Smith was booked on multiple charges, including simple arson.

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