A former Cheboygan fire cadet who aged out of the program is now facing charges for starting fires. The program is meant to show teens what it's like to be a firefighter.
" The structure had no power, no elect r icity, and so it didn't make sense that where the fire originated, that it was not intentionally set ," Cheboygan County Sheriff Dale Clarmont said.
T he fire that torched a storage shed is what led authorities to the arrest of 18 year old Evan Hales. Police reports state that Hales turned himself in for setting this fire and two other grass fires earlier this summer. He was a recent graduate of the cadet program here at the Inverness Township Fire Department. The reports indicate that he set the fires because he was upset that he couldn't be involved with the fire department after graduating from their cadet program.
" Mr. Hales is out on bond that was set by the court, and we do not believe he is any threat to society at this time ," Sheriff Clarmont said.
T he Sheriff's department is not worried about more cases of arson popping up in this small community. They believe this was a contained incident. But they say that in cases like this they were just lucky the fires didn't get out of control.
" One of the concerns we had during these fires that were being set was the issue of wildfires, we were concerned that the areas where the fires were being set at any given time the fires could spread into the woodland, then we would have a real mess on our hands ," Sheriff Clarmont said.
Evan H ales faces two felony counts of arson. O ne for the grass fires and one for the structure fire. He will go before a judge on September 19th for his pre-liminary hearing.