Arson Arrest Made

There's a major break in the investigation of a recent string of fires at Nacogdoches High School. Tuesday, two Nacogdoches High School Students were placed under arrest for arson, which is a first degree felony.

NISD Police Chief Doug Ploch says 17-year old Germane Barnes was arrested on charges of arson. His arrest is in connection with the first fire set on April 16th in a boy's restroom.

Another high school student, a male juvenile, was arrested for his role in the second fire the following week. That incident was quickly contained by school staff, and did not require a call to the fire department.

In all, there have been four fires at Nacogdoches High School. The last fire on April 22nd was the most serious, and a teacher was injured while trying to put it out.

Ploch says the arrests made today were based on numerous interviews that started within fifteen minutes of the first fire. The school police chief anticipates that more charges will be filed.

Nacogdoches High School Principal Liz Ballenger provided an update to faculty. She plans to announce to students that arrests have been made and that tightened security will continue on campus. Ballenger compliments the police department and students for their cooperation in the investigation.

Although these two students are thought to be responsible for two of the fires, other students may have been involved and could face similar charges, including attempted arson.

If you have any information about the fires that could be helpful to investigators, you can give an anonymous tip by calling Nacogdoches Crimestoppers at 560-INFO, or by dropping a tip-card into one of the four Crimestoppers drop lockers on the high school campus. If your tip results in an arrest, you may be eligible for a cash reward.