GALLIPOLIS — A Bidwell man charged with lighting a gasoline fire that damaged a Vinton residence in July recently entered a guilty plea in the Common Pleas Court of Gallia County.
Rodney S. White, 46, pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree felony arson on December 21.
According to the original complaint filed with the Gallipolis Municipal Court and signed by Allen Flickinger of the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Office, a domestic dispute occurred just prior to the fire that damaged the home located Ohio 160 near the Gallia/Vinton county line.
The dispute occurred between the defendant and the residents of the home on July 30, 2012, according to the complaint, and White later admitted to leaving the residence, kicking over a gas can located by the back door of the dwelling and intentionally lighting the spilled gasoline. The resulting fire reportedly caused “substantial” damage to the home.
White later made an initial appearance in the Gallipolis Municipal Court, and his bond was set at $400,000, 10 percent.
He was later indicted by a grand jury on one count of aggravated arson, a second degree felony, for intentionally lighting the fire that caused damage to the single-family dwelling located at 19817 Ohio 160. The defendant later appeared for an arraignment on September 19.
During his arraignment hearing, White’s bond was set at $25,000, 10 percent.
A plea agreement deadline was later continued in this case, and White’s bond was reduced to an own recognizance bond in November.
A proposed guilty plea was filed on December 6, and a victim’s statement signed by Chief Deputy Richard Grau of the Gallia County Sheriff’s Office agreeing to the proposed plea was filed on December 10.
During the plea hearing on December 21, White entered a guilty plea to a lesser charge of third-degree felony arson.
A pre-sentence investigation was ordered to be performed by the Adult Probation Department, and the case was continued for sentencing on January 30.