Bath salts charges for man accused of sparking wildfire

Published: Aug. 29, 2012 at 12:43 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 29, 2012 at 3:25 PM EDT
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Marc Torchi (Source: J. Reuben Long Detention Center)
Marc Torchi (Source: J. Reuben Long Detention Center)

CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - The man fire officials say is responsible for the Horry County Wildfire is facing several drug charges for possessing and distributing a bath salt substance.

DEU Deputy Commander Dean Bishop tells WMBF News that 42-year-old Marc Anthony Torchi of Conway was the target of an investigation by the 15th Circuit Drug Enforcement Unit into Schedule I narcotics.

The DEU was conducting surveillance concerning the sale and delivering of bath salt type products that violate the Controlled Substance Act when they developed enough probable cause to obtain a search warrant of Torchi's home on 2300 block of Woodlawn Drive in Conway.

During that search, agents discovered and seized 290 packets of the bath salt substance, 28 grams of marijuana and some Schedule IV medications, as well as $4,000 in US currency.

Torchi was arrested on Monday and charged with the distribution of a Schedule I Narcotic, possession of a Schedule I Narcotic, simple possession of marijuana and possession of a Schedule IV Narcotic.

He was released from J. Reuben Long Detention Center Wednesday night on a $26,650 bond.

Back in 2009, Marc Torchi was questioned in the days following the Horry County Wildfire, and paid fines for fire-related charges.

In October 2009, Torchi pleaded guilty for not notifying the South Carolina Forestry Commission before starting the fire outside his Conway home, and for allowing it to spread to another property.

The SC Forestry Commission said they were not holding Torchi criminally responsible for starting the wildfire, but based on their investigation, it originated on his property.

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