Businessman faces 70 years in prison for setting store ablaze for insurance money

A Douglas County man was convicted this week of setting his business on fire to collect insurance money, injuring a firefighter who responded to battle the blaze, authorities said.

Christopher Hedgecock, 35, is facing up to 70 years in prison and a $400,000 fine for burning down Town and Country Fabrics & Upholstery in Douglasville’s historic district in 2014, Georgia Insurance Commissioner Jim Beck said in a news release.

On August 5, 17 fire units responded to the incident, with one firefighter having to be taken to a hospital after getting hurt as a result of battling the blaze, the release said.

One of Hedgecock’s employees, Derek Rosa, pleaded guilty to an arson charge in 2018 after being arrested during the investigation, the release said.

Hedgecock was found guilty of three counts of arson and one count of insurance fraud for his role in the scheme.

The investigation into this incident was conducted by the Douglas County Fire Department, the State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

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