SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — Police have arrested a suspect for arson after responding to a house fire on Ashton Ave. in Sugarhouse on Saturday, Apr. 8, according to the Salt Lake City Fire Dept.
Authorities responded to a report of a house fire and arrived to find smoke coming from the basement. While firefighters worked to extinguish the fire, several of them said they observed a man leaving the house through the window.
Authorities stopped the man and told him to remain on the scene when he allegedly blurted out “I lit a few sticks on fire,” according to the probable cause statement. The suspect, later identified as Marcus Richards, 39, then reportedly fled the scene.
Salt Lake City Police said they located Richards “a few blocks from the scene” where he “refused to follow the commands of the police officers and actively resisted being taken into custody.”
Police detained Richards and allegedly found a syringe and methamphetamine while searching him, according to the statement.
The Ashton Ave. house reportedly appeared to be abandoned, with the windows slated up with cardboard. While the fire was small, authorities say the structure was damaged by the fire.
Richards has been booked in the Salt Lake County Jail. He is facing one charge of aggravated arson, a first-degree felony, failing to stop at the command of law enforcement, and possession or use of a controlled substance. Authorities say there are several active warrants out for his arrest.