From WRIL -
On Thursday, January 12, 2023 Kentucky State Trooper Detective Jake Middleton lodged charges against three Bell County Volunteer Firefighters after an investigation into a recent fire on Balkan Road in Pineville.
The incident is alleged to have taken place on June 23, 2022 when it was determined a structure fire was purposely set by firefighters 19-year-old Jacob N. Hobbs, 18-year-old Andrew Jordan Johnson, and an unnamed juvenile. Shortly after the fire was set, the BCVFD responded to the scene in their official capacity and extinguished the flames.
All three individuals have been charged with Arson - 3rd degree. While Hobbs and Johnson were arrested and lodged in the Bell County Detention Center, they have since been released on bond. They were arraigned today in general session court. Jacob Hobbs was given another court date of February 7, 2023, and Andrew Johnson January 24, 2023. The juvenile remains in custody in Breathitt County.
We reached out to BCVFD Fire Chief Tim Howard and he stated he cannot comment regarding an on-going investigation.
Detective Jake Middleton is continuing this investigation.
*All those reported by WRIL as being charged with a crime are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.