Langley arson suspect appears in court

KING 5's Jenna Hanchard reports.

The man suspected of intentionally setting a multi-house fire in Langley appeared in court Friday.

Blake Fountain will be formally charged Monday with first-degree arson.

An Island County judge set bail at $150,000 and required Fountain to undergo a mental health evaluation.

“His behavior at the scene raised some questions about his mental health,” said Island County Prosecutor Greg Banks.

Banks also said there was some indication that he may have had a mental crisis this week and was taken to the hospital for an evaluation.

According to court documents, Fountain was living at the home that was the first the catch fire Thursday morning.

“We averted a more serious tragedy. Certainly, this is a tragedy, but the fact that no lives were lost and only minor injuries is good,” said Sheriff Mark Brown.

Fountain will also face allegations of domestic violence, because he was living at the home, Banks said.

“It may not be what folks think of in a technical domestic sense, but it does provide additional protections for the victims of the crime,” Banks said.

The owner of the home, Roger Vehorn, is a local pastor. He said he and his wife are recovering after having to jump off the deck to save themselves from the fire.

Fountain did not deny setting the fire and was not communicative when firefighters arrived, according to court documents.

Three homes were damaged in the fire. Neighbors reported hearing an explosion shortly before the fire.

If convicted, Fountain faces 27 months in jail.

© 2017 KING-TV


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