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Man arrested on suspicion of arson in Boone County fire

Boone County deputies arrested 84-year-old James Henry Heitzler in connection to a house fire near Hallsville Thursday.

Early Friday, deputies released details about the disturbance that allegedly led up to the fire shortly after 3 p.m. Heitzler’s daughter told them she and her father got into a physical argument, during which Heitzler pulled a gun and threatened her. At one point, she says he set fire to their home on Highway OO.

Boone County Fire Department Captain, Martina Pounds, said the fire damaged the home’s kitchen, garage and back side; other rooms were damaged by smoke.

Heitzler was arrested on suspicion of arson, unlawful use of a weapon, armed criminal action, and domestic assault.

With Heitzler acting in such an irrational way, a question of his mental state was brought to the Boone County Sheriffs Department, “I will tell you this, he’s in our jail, he is not in a mental health facility.”

Charges were officially filed Friday afternoon and Heitzler is currently being held in the Boone County Jail on $100,000 bond.

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