Jan. 15--HARRISON COUNTY -- Two men face arson charges alleging one of them hired the other to set his home on fire and promised to pay him after his insurance claim was paid, said Maj. Ron Pullen of the Harrison County Sheriff's Office.
Investigators believe Billy Wayne Seaton offered to pay Jesse Duane Wood$5,000 for torching a house he was buying through an owner-lease agreement, Pullen said. The homeowner had insurance, and Seaton had taken out a separate insurance policy.
"Mr. Seaton didn't get any money from his insurance company because the homeowner's claim was paid to the homeowner," he said.
Both men are held at the Harrison County jail.
Detectives arrested Seaton, 37, Tuesday on charges of arson of a dwelling and obstructing justice. He was booked at the county jail on bonds of $55,000 bond.
Seaton had been out of jail since Nov. 14, when the sheriff's office arrested him on a charge of receiving stolen property. He had been released on a $25,000 bond. The jail docket shows he now has no bond on that charge.
Wood, 30, had been out of jail two days. D'Iberville police arrested him Jan. 5 on a grand larceny charge after he reportedly was found towing a 36-foot center-console boat and told police he had just bought it from the owner. Authorities said an officer stopped him at 1:34 a.m. because the trailer used to haul the boat had no lights. Police said they learned the owner hadn't sold the boat.
Wood was released on that charge under a $10,000 bond.
Detectives arrested Wood on the arson charge Jan. 7 but withheld details, saying they wanted to wait until they were able to make a second arrest.
The Sun Herald is working on an updated news report.
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