Three LaPorte County Jail inmates have been charged with arson in what Sheriff Michael Mollenhauer called a “well-planned-out crime.”
The July 20 fire injured seven inmates. According to an Associated Press report from July 22, video surveillance showed wires from a light fixture were used to create a spark and set toilet paper on fire. The paper was used to set ablaze a mattress and blankets, sending thick smoke throughout the cell block.
“The camera recording system within the jail was instrumental in assisting our detectives in piecing together the chain of events concerning this well planned out crime,” Mollenhauer said in a news release Thursday. “The recordings provided an accurate depiction of the incident and were used as a reference for subsequent inmate interviews.”
The inmates charged with arson, a Class B felony, were 20-year-old Sergio Gamez, 19-year-old Rickey Holmes and a juvenile who cannot be identified because of his age.