Arson suspect arrested

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 14, 2005

GARYSBURG – Citizens and law enforcement working together made a difference.

According to Northampton County Sheriff Wardie Vincent, it was solid investigative work by his department and good tips from citizens that combined to lead to the arrest of a Garysburg man on arson charges.

Jeremiah Wilbur Goode, 42, of 115 Lowe’s Court in Garysburg was charged with two felony counts of second degree arson in connection with a fire that destroyed two structures in the same town.

He is in the Northampton County Jail under a $50,000 secured bond after having his first appearance yesterday.

On June 3, the Northampton County Sheriff’s Department, Garysburg Police Department and Garysburg Fire Department responded to simultaneous fires at 221 and 223 Circle Drive. Moments later another fire was detected at an unoccupied residence on U.S. 301, which was across the street from the other fires.

After the fires were extinguished, the sheriff’s department was alerted that the fires appeared to have been set.

Vincent said investigators began their work quickly and almost immediately tips began to come in that led officers to make Goode a &uot;person of interest&uot; in the case.

&uot;We were able to make an arrest after we recovered physical evidence to go along with the citizen’s comments,&uot; Vincent said.

He declined to give details of the physical evidence.

Sgt. Gerri Bowen, who had been the lead investigator in the case, made the arrest on Friday evening along with other officers from the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office.

&uot;The investigation was handled in an efficient manner,&uot; Vincent said. &uot;The officers did a magnificent job to apprehend the person in a short amount of time. I thank them for a job well done.

&uot;If it had not been for the support of area citizens and the community at large, we wouldn’t have been able to move so quickly,&uot; he added. &uot;We certainly appreciate their support.&uot;