A New Ringgold man pleaded guilty to setting three arson fires in West Penn Township and received a jail sentence and face a high restitution bill in the Schuylkill County prison.
Todd Deem II, 21, of 105 Dorset Road, was sentenced by Judge Cyrus Palmer Dolbin to serve four to 12 months in the Luzerne County Prison and make restitution of $140,000 to All About Homes for damages caused to a vacant building at 114 Dorset Road, New Ringgold; $1,000 to Dolores Yoggie for setting fire to an old red barn at 1 Fort Franklin Road, New Ringgold; and $300 to Ms. Yoggie for damage to one acre of land in a wooded area off the Blue Mountain Drive near a railroad bed.
The sentence was on two counts of arson. He also pleaded guilty to three counts of recklessly endangering firefighters, police officers and other persons actively engaged in fighting the fire for which he was sentenced to serve 12 months on probation for each charge with the sentences to run concurrent to the arson sentences.
He also pleaded guilty to a charge of agricultural trespass by entering the property on Blue Mountain Drive and setting on fire a hay field and received a sentence of 12 months probation to run concurrent. He pleaded guilty to three counts of criminal mischief and was sentenced on two counts to serve 12 months on probation on each to run concurrent and on the third count was fined $25. He also must pay costs of prosecution.
He was cited by West Penn Township Chief Brian Johnson, whose investigation found the fire in the wooded area happened on Sept. 21, 2009; the fire at the vacant home at Dec. 14, 2010; and the fire at the barn on April 9, 2011.
On April 9, 2011, Corporal Shawn Hllbert and Trooper David Klitsch interviewed Deem at Lehighton state police barracks. The interview involved the fires in Schuylkill and Carbon counties and Deem admitted to the fires in Schuylkill County.
Deem is awaiting sentencing in Carbon on arson charges he previously entered guilty pleas.