Constable arrests Trinity woman for 5 arsons

Tommie Ragsdale mug shot courtesy of Trinity County Constable Pct. 1.
Tommie Ragsdale mug shot courtesy of Trinity County Constable Pct. 1.

TRINITY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Trinity County Constable Woody Wallace arrested a Trinity woman Monday morning following an investigation to five separate fires in the area of FM 355 Sunday morning.

Wallace said Tommie Ragsdale, 46, started the fires one at a time, then called them in to 911.

"She started one on the road, then called it in," Ragsdale said. "Then she started three behind her house and went to a neighbor's house and had them call it in. The other one on the road I think a firefighter came up on."

"Firefighters were able to get to them pretty quick, because they were in the area," Wallace said. "I think the biggest one was about 50 feet by 50 feet."

Wallace said three of the fires were set behind Ragsdale's property in the French Lane area. The other two were set along FM 355.

Wallace said Ragsdale was actually helping at the command center during last week's large fire in the same area and she set these five fires because she was feeling lonely.

"She got a lot of excitement from last week and wanted to see that again," Wallace said.

Now, Ragsdale is in jail on a total bail bond of $450,000, as she is charged with five counts of arson.

Constable's Deputy Rusty Barrett interviewed a witness who said he saw Ragsdale in the area of the fires on the road.

"We interviewed her yesterday and she seemed pretty nervous," Wallace said. "So I came back and interviewed her again this morning after talking to all the witnesses."

Wallace said Ragsdale confessed to starting all the fires.

Ragsdale lit the fires behind her house by lighting pine straw. She had to get a little more creative for the fires on the road.

"She had shards of paper in her car and she just lit them on fire and threw them on the grass," Wallace said.

Ragsdale has no criminal convictions in Texas, according to public records.

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