Suspect charged with arson in Caroline County fire

by | Mar 13, 2023 | Police and Fire

From the Caroline Countiy Sheriff’s Office:

On March 06, 2023, While on patrol, Deputy Dobb was flagged down by a concerned citizen, alerting him to a possible house fire on Industrial Drive, in Milford, VA. Deputy Dobb notified dispatch of the information he received and responded to the location the concerned citizen described, finding an abandoned home fully engulfed with fire. Caroline Fire/Rescue responded and extinguished the fire, which completely destroyed the home.

Sheriff’s Office Fire Investigators, Lieutenant C. Rozell and Sergeant B. Doucet responded and determined arson to be the likely cause of the fire.

After further investigation and information gathering from citizens, 26- year-old Joshua Harper, of Front Royal, VA, was developed as a suspect. Fire Investigators knew Harper operated a tractor-trailer and frequented the Milford area. After seeing Harper in Milford, on March 13, 2023, investigators approached Harper for the purpose of questioning him about the fire. Shortly following this encounter, Harper was placed under arrest for breaking and entering and arson. Investigators believe the thrill of committing arson to be the motive for the crime, and there is no known connection between Harper and the owners of the property. Harper was transported to Pamunkey Regional Jail where he was held without bond.


Sheriff, Scott Moser stated, “I am very proud of the great investigative work done by CCSO Fire Investigators, Lt. Rozell and Sgt. Doucet. I am also proud of Deputy Dobb’s attempt to ensure the home was unoccupied when he first arrived. Mostly, I am very thankful for the community involvement in this case. Information gained from concerned and watchful citizens solved this case. Keeping our communities safe requires teamwork with our citizens, and this case is a great example of that teamwork. Together, we will continue to strengthen our community, and make Caroline County a model for others to follow”.

Photos courtesy Caroline County Sheriff’s Office

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