Devin C. Penney

JAY — State fire investigators arrested a local man on a felony charge of arson early Tuesday morning.

Sgt. Kenneth Grimes of the Office of the State Fire Marshal said the man started a small fire in a garage at an Intervale Road home.

He said Devin C. Penney, 21, lit cloth or paper on fire with a cigarette lighter.

Jay police and firefighters were called to the home at about 12:30 a.m. Tuesday. The call for the fire originated from the home, Grimes said.

The split-level house, with a garage under the living quarters, at 229 Intervale Road is leased by Sabrina Penney who lives there with her four children, Grimes said.

Devin Penney is the oldest son. An 18-year-old, an 8-year-old and a 7-year-old also live there, he said.


Police and firefighters helped evacuate the house. No one was injured.

The fire was small and was able to be put out by a fire extinguisher, Fire Chief Michael Booker said. No damage was done, but firefighters had to clear smoke from the building.

Three investigators from the State Fire Marshal’s Office responded to the scene, Sgt. Grimes, Investigator Kenneth MacMaster and Investigator Isaiah Peppard.

“The investigation came together smoothly,” Grimes said. “I have great appreciation for Jay police and fire departments for their prompt response, which kept the fire from spiraling out of control.”

The investigators from the Fire Marshal’s Office arrested Penney who was taken to the Franklin County Detention Center in Farmington.

As of Tuesday afternoon, no bail had been set for Penney, according to a jail officer. If convicted, he would face up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

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