Sheriff Heath and Jones County Investigators were on the scene of two suspicious fires this weekend. Both of which occurred in the western part of the county in less than 24 hours. One at a pack house on Friday night, located at 799 Plantation Rd. and the other on Saturday afternoon, at a residence and on a vehicle located at 476 Stones Chapel Rd. Investigators performed a canvass of the area, conducted field interviews and developed a person of interest, whom later became a suspect in the case. An arson investigator from the NC SBI was called in and was able to confirm that at least one of the fires were intentionally set. Evidence located at both scenes by Jones County investigators showed a link between the two. Further investigation led to warrants being secured for the suspect.
Jones County deputies located the suspect while conducting a license checking station in the area of Hwy 58 North and Middle Rd., on Sunday evening. Patrick Leo Mahoney, 54 of Trenton, was arrested on felony warrants and charged with Second Degree Arson (F), Burning Certain Buildings (F), Burning Personal Property (F) and Felony Breaking and or Entering (F). Mahoney was placed into the custody of the Jones County Jail under a $30,000 Secured Bond.
Note: One of the victims in the case was one of many church members in the area who had reached out to assist Mr. Mahoney, while he was down on his luck.
J.C.S.O. Public Affairs Officer ” It’s unfortunate when a community opens up its arms to a person and they are repaid in such a foul manner. Hopefully the citizens in the Plantation Road area can sleep a little easier, knowing that the person responsible for these fires is now behind bars.” ~ Sheriff Danny R. Heath