Tifton Gazette

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April 15, 2014

Drinking leads to arson

TIFTON — A Tifton man was arrested Friday for arson after he tried to set a house on fire.

According to an incident report filed at the Tifton Police Department, a 42-year-old woman who lives in the 300 block of Alder Street reported Thursday night that Earnest Barthell, 45, was trying to set her house on fire. She said she and Barthell were drinking together when he got mad and left. She said she heard him outside yelling and cursing.

The complainant said when she went to the back door, she found the rear steps and the back door on fire and saw Barthell running off. She put the fire out and then called the police. She noted Barthell also tried to start a fire earlier but was unable to do so.

The scene was secured by police with crime scene tape.

Barthell was charged with arson in the first degree.

To contact reporter Latasha Ford, call 382-4321.

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