On Wednesday, April 12, 2023 at approx. 12:27 P.M. the Alpena County Sheriffs Office, Michigan State Police, and Alpena Township Fire Department responded to a report of an explosion at 522 Michigan Ave., in Alpena Township. Callers reported hearing a loud boom and seeing a white male jump out of a window, as smoke and flames erupted. It was further reported that the male got into a black sedan and drove away from the scene, before emergency responders arrived. When deputies arrived, it was confirmed that no one was in the residence, but found that a dog had succumbed to smoke inhalation. Alpena Township Fire Department personnel and the Alpena County Sheriffs Office Animal Control Officer made a valiant attempt to resuscitate the family pet by administering CPR and transporting it to a local veterinarian.
Deputies confirmed the identity of the home owner and contacted her within 20 minutes of the initial incident. Deputies also confirmed that she and her daughter were at separate locations and were safe. Alpena County Sheriffs Office personnel responded to both locations, out of caution. After giving the homeowner the description of the male witnessed on scene, a suspect was developed. Deputies continued investigating and interviewing potential witnesses. A video of the suspect's car arriving and leaving the residence was obtained from a neighbor's surveillance camera. Nearby residents also reported the smell of gasoline around the time of hearing the loud boom and a motive was developed.
With the help of the Michigan State Police fugitive team and the United States Marshals, the suspect was found to have returned to the Waterford, Michigan area. US Marshals were able to track the suspect to an address near Cincinnati, Ohio. On Friday April 14th around 1 P.M., the Marshals took the suspect into custody without incident, on charges of Home Invasion, SecondDegree Arson, Preparing to Burn a Structure, and Felony Animal Abuse. The suspect is currently lodged in in the Clermont County Jail (Ohio) and is awaiting for an extradition hearing. After his extradition hearing, he will be transported to the Alpena County Jail and face charges through the Alpena County Prosecuting Attorney's Office.
This information was not released to the public on Friday April 14th, because it may have impeded further investigation late Friday afternoon. Deputies from the Alpena County Sheriffs Office traveled to the metro Detroit area and were able to seize the black sedan used during the commission of this crime and also interview additional witnesses. The vehicle will be processed by Evidence Technicians and any further evidence will be collected.
This investigation was a great team effort by the Alpena County Sheriffs Office and not by one individual. I want to take this opportunity to thank the citizens of Alpena County for the help and support they have given this office throughout this investigation.