Months after a Floyd County mansion was foreclosed, it burned down in a massive fire.
On Thursday, fire investigators announced that they don’t believe it was an accident.
The mansion’s former owner, Stanley Stephens, was arrested this week along with his friend Donald Luallen on felony arson charges in connection with the fire, Channel 2 Action News reported.
The 5,900-square-foot home off Craton Road burned to the ground Feb. 10, Channel 2 reported. No one was hurt as a result of the fire.
“This is one of the largest arson cases in Floyd County,” Floyd County Fire Marshal Mary Catherine Chewning said. “There was an ignitable liquid used.”
The blaze was so intense and large that neighbor Jody Fincher thought his home was the one on fire, he told the news station.
“There was a bunch of ash being kicked up, and it came over and got into our yard,” he said. “It was setting the yard on fire. The next-door neighbor was out with the hose spraying his house — worried about it catching on fire.”
Stephens was arrested in Daytona Beach, Fla., while Luallen was arrested in Alabama, Channel 2 reported. Investigators said more arson charges along with conspiracy charges are possible.
Chewning said this is a $2.5 million case when you factor in the cost of the mansion as well as the time and money spent on the investigation.
In other news:
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.