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Local man facing two counts felony arson

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A Crawfordsville man upset that his home had been foreclosed upon by the bank is now facing charges that he set fire to the residence in retaliation.

William Dale Eads, 64, was arrested Monday on a warrant charging him with two counts of felony arson and was booked into the Montgomery County Jail. As of Tuesday afternoon, Eads remained jailed on a $15,000 surety bond or $3,000 cash bond.

According to a probable cause affidavit filed in Montgomery Circuit Court, Eads told investigators that on the morning of Oct. 31 he received a letter in the mail from a law office representing PNC Bank informing him that his home at 1100 Tuttle Ave. had been foreclosed upon and that he would need to leave the property or the sheriff’s department would remove him.

Court records show the property had been foreclosed upon in August, however, Eads believed he could remain there until the house sold. Eads told investigators he felt he had been lied to by the bank and became upset.

That is when Eads went to a detached outdoor shed, got a can of gas, went back inside and began pouring the contents of the gas can throughout the home. He then got some matches from the top of a refrigerator and set a fire inside the home near the laundry room, the affidavit stated.

Crawfordsville firefighters and police responded to the scene of the 11:07 a.m. fire. Neighbors advised emergency responders that no one was in the residence and that the home was in foreclosure.

Court documents indicate that after the fire was extinguished, police located Eads in Ladoga. He had called for an ambulance because he was experiencing chest pains. Eads was then transported to Franciscan Health Crawfordsville, where he was advised of his rights and interviewed by police.

Crawfordsville Police Detective Aaron Mattingly spoke with Eads as well as other police and fire officials, including an investigator with the State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Mattingly stated in the affidavit that he believes that setting a house fire in a residential neighborhood presented a danger to life and safety of neighbors and to the Crawfordsville firefighters who responded to the scene. Furthermore, Mattingly noted that damages to the residence are in excess of $5,000.

Eads appeared Tuesday for an initial hearing. No other court dates have been set at this time.

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