CLEARFIELD – A 43-year-old Clearfield man, William John Devaney Jr., has been has been accused of arson, according to Clearfield County District Attorney William A. Shaw Jr.
Officer J. Michael Morris of the Lawrence Township Police Department filed a criminal complaint Monday, charging Devaney with arson endangering persons, arson endangering property, reckless burning or exploding, criminal mischief and recklessly endangering another person.
An affidavit of probable cause filed by Morris states that on May 27, 2012, the Lawrence Township Police Department received a report for a structure fire at 98 Franks Ln. in Lawrence Township. Officers from the Clearfield Borough Police Department were the first to respond and attempted to extinguish the fire but were unsuccessful as the fire rapidly spread.
While officers and firefighters were present at the scene, there were two minor explosions, and live power lines fell to the ground caused by the heat of the fire. Upon investigation it was found that Devaney had started the fire by igniting gasoline on the porch of the structure.
In a separate case, Morris filed a criminal complaint Monday, charging Devaney with arson endangering property, reckless burning or exploding and criminal mischief.
An affidavit of probable cause filed by Morris states that on Oct. 3, 2012, the Lawrence Township Police Department received a report of a structure fire at 83 Franks Ln. in Lawrence Township. Upon investigation, it was found that Devaney had started the fire by pouring gasoline on the outside of the trailer and then igniting the gasoline. The trailer was gutted by the fire.
Shaw stated preliminary hearings are scheduled for April 17. Devaney’s bail has been set at $50,000 for each case.
Shaw thanked the Lawrence Township and Clearfield Borough police department and the Pennsylvania State Police for their hard work and assistance with this case.
Anyone with knowledge of a crime is asked to call Clearfield County Crime Stoppers at 800-376-4700. All calls to Crime Stoppers are confidential.
Anonymous tips can also be submitted by visiting the Clearfield County District Attorney Web site at “www.ClearfieldDA.org” and selecting “Report A Crime.”