Suspect in arson fire near Nichols in custody in North Carolina

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – A man in custody in Columbus County is accused of starting an arson fire at a home near Nichols while two people were asleep inside Thursday morning.

Firefighters and police responded to a fire at single family home in the Causey Community. One of the victims who was at the home when the fire started identified the suspect and said he was walking towards Fairbluff, North Carolina.

A witness said she was driving in the area of Causey Road when she saw a man matching the suspect's description walking away from the residence.

Fire personnel at the scene advised that the fire was an act of arson, and an Horry County Police arson investigator responded. An officer noticed foot impressions in the area, and a bloodhound tracking team was dispatched.

Officers then received information that the suspect was across the state line, in a building in North Carolina. HCPD requested the assistance of Columbus County. According to Lt. Robert Kegler with HCPD, the suspect is in custody in Columbus County, awaiting extradition.

Fire crews were on scene of the fire on Sand Plant Road at about 7:40 a.m., according to Justin Gibbins with Horry County Fire Rescue. The wood-frame house was fully-involved. The Fair Bluff Fire Department assisted with mutual aid, Gibbins stated.

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