Dexter man charged with arson

Dexter man charged with arson
James Higgs (Source: Vinelink)
James Higgs (Source: Vinelink)

DEXTER, MO (KFVS) - A man is behind bars after a suspicious fire at a house in Dexter, Mo.

The Stoddard County Prosecuting Attorney has charged James Higgs, 54, with 2nd degree arson in reference to the fire broke out at 11:35 a.m. at 815 North Sassafrass Monday.

According to Dexter Fire Chief Don Seymore, the double wide mobile home was fully involved at one point and is a total loss.

Seymore reports nobody was hurt in the fire.

Court documents show extensive damage to the outside and inside of the home.

However, investigators ruled out all accidental causes near the area where the fire started.

According to court documents, a witness saw Higgs leave the home before the fire started.

The witness told investigators Higgs left the home carrying a picture frame and began walking south  on Sassafrass and by the time he got to the end of the block the witness saw smoke coming from inside the house.

In court documents, investigators report the fire was incendiary for the following reasons:

  • the evidence of low level burning in the area of the origin,
  • the elimination of any appliances as the cause of the fire,
  • the elimination of accidental cause for the fire in the location or manner found,
  • eye witness account of Higgs leaving the residence with personal property before the fire.

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