published: Sunday, February 03, 2013
Inmate charged with arson at HCSO jail
By SAMANTHA GHOLAR
SEBRING - The Sebring Fire Department responded to a call at the Highlands County Jail Jan. 28 after Deputy Todd Muse smelled smoke coming from one of the center's posts.
Fire personnel discovered a "smolder of miscellaneous papers in a pipe that also serves as an air conditioner return" at the post inside the jail, according to a news release from Sheriff Susan Benton.
The smoldering fire filled the post and one cell block. Due to the amount of smoke in the location, the jail was forced to evacuate 96 inmates from the area. Inmates were taken to a non-affected location within the jail.
HCSO detectives, along with the state fire marshal, were called in to investigate the incident shortly after it was discovered. Through the fire investigation, HCSO was able to identify and charge inmate David Louisnel Edmond.
Edmond, 22, of 2520 Hope Circle in Sebring, was charged with first degree arson. The charge is a first degree felony arson to a dwelling or building with people present.
Edmond was incarcerated at the time of the incident on charges of firing a missile into a dwelling, criminal mischief, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon and discharging a firearm from a vehicle.
The bail for Edmonds has been increased to $120,000 as a result of the new charges added to his record from Monday's incident.
"Incidents like this in the detention facility are taken very seriously by the Sheriff's Office," Chief Deputy Mark Schrader said. "We credit a quick response by the dentition deputies and swift and expedient investigation by sheriff's detectives, which resulted in charges against the inmate."
Edmond's previous charges and lengthy arrest report include possession of narcotics, burglary, aggravated assault and petty theft.
Edmond will remain in custody at the HCSO Jail. No further information is available at this time.
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