Two Cairo auxiliary firefighters accused of arson

Richard Scott Pitcher (Source: Tri-County Detention Center)
Richard Scott Pitcher (Source: Tri-County Detention Center)
David Patrick (Source: Tri-County Detention Center)
David Patrick (Source: Tri-County Detention Center)

CAIRO, IL (KFVS) - Two Cairo auxiliary firefighters face arson charges in Alexander County.

Richard Scott Pitcher, 18, of Cairo and David Patrick, 22, of Arlington, Kentucky were each charged with two counts of arson.

Both were members of the Cairo Auxiliary Fire Department, according to Illinois State Police.

One fire was January 22 at a storage facility in Cairo adjacent to 33rd Street and the Mississippi River levee.

The other fire was April 16 off of Illinois 37.

James McWilliams, the training officer for the Cairo Auxiliary Fire Department, says both suspects started work for the auxiliary fire department around the same time at the beginning of the year.

Pitcher and Patrick were taken to the Tri-County Detention Center.

Pitcher was released on $100,000 bond.

Some people in Cairo say these arrests might be a step forward for Cairo.

"We have long suspected that there were some problems here internally, and nothing had been confirmed, and it was just innuendo, and maybe just rumor," said Cairo resident Harold Jones. "But we are glad to get this beyond us, because Cairo is a great place, it has great citizens, a great history, and a great future."

"I'm glad something is finally being done," said Cairo resident Roy Dixon. "I know they have been making some type of progress, but I'm glad someone to actually be arrested for it, that's a major step."

"Crime can be isolated, it can be just a few bad apples, because that in no way is representative of the citizens of Cairo," said Jones.

The Cairo Police Department, Cairo Fire Department, Alexander County Sheriff's Department, and the Illinois State Fire Marshall assisted in the investigation.

The investigation continues.

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