The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

September 18, 2013

Oak Hill man arrested for arson

By Brandi Underwood
Register-Herald Reporter

— An Oak Hill man was arrested Monday in connection with the burglary and arson of a Fayette County home on Saturday.

Christian Warrick, 31, was charged with the felony offenses of first degree arson and nighttime burglary of a residence at 51 North Errington Road in the Prudence area near Oak Hill.

According to a press release from the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office, the fire was originally reported at approximately 6 a.m. on Saturday and was extinguished by firefighters from Oak Hill and Mount Hope volunteer fire departments.  

The Fire and Arson Unit of the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department was able to determine that the fire was intentionally started by igniting a couch in the living room in an attempt to conceal the fact that the residence had been burglarized. The owner of the home was incarcerated in the Southern Regional Jail on drug charges at the time.

Investigators were able to retrieve and view video surveillance footage of the crime, according to the release.

Viewing the footage and speaking with neighbors allowed investigators to identify Warrick as a potential suspect. After a search warrant was obtained to search the suspect’s house, officers recovered several items linking Warrick with the crime.

After being confronted with the evidence, Warrick confessed to committing the crime.

He was arraigned in Fayette County Magistrate Court and released on a $25,000 bond posted by a relative.

“The video surveillance footage recovered from the scene was extremely important in permitting us to solve this crime so quickly,” Fayette County Sheriff Steve Kessler stated in the release. “We also received substantial assistance from the residents in this area in the form of tips and leads that enabled us to quickly identify a suspect in this crime.

Without the assistance of the public, crimes of this nature can be extremely difficult to investigate.”