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Judge Sentences Dustin Taylor To 11.5 Years In Prison
Updated August 27, 2015 7:53 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(BEDFORD) - Lawrence County Superior Court I Judge Michael Robbins sentenced 23-year-old Dustin Taylor to 11.5 years in prison for the fire he started inside of Dunham's and two other unrelated incidents.

The fire, on December 12, 2014, closed the store for several months. The store had to pay a $25,000 insurance deductible, with the insurance company shelling out more than $900,000 for the damages caused by the fire. The store remained closed until late February.

According to court records, Dustin Taylor plead guilty to a felony count of arson in a negotiated plea deal. He had also pleaded guilty to Level 6 felonies of attempted theft and possession of a narcotic drug.

For the charges of attempted theft and possession of a narcotic drug in the unrelated case, Robbins sentenced Taylor to the maximum of 2.5 years with the Indiana Department of Correction. For the charge of arson, Level 4 felony, Taylor was ordered to nine years in the Department of Corrections with two years suspended to supervised probation, and one year on electronic monitoring.

He received credit for 246 days already served, and was ordered to participate in both ADAPT and the therapeutic community while in prison.

He also must pay $25,000 in restitution to Dunham's.

According to Bedford Police Chief Dennis Parsley, officers arrested Taylor after they caught him starting a fire in a restroom at the back of the Walmart store during the early morning hours of Saturday, December 13, 2014.

Detectives began reviewing in-store video and also found evidence at the scene that led them to Walmart to review store security video there. The items recovered at Dunham's had been purchased from Walmart.

Officers were at Walmart investigating the Dunham fire when they were notified Taylor was in the store and had entered the rear bathroom. When the officer entered the restroom, they found Taylor had started a small fire. Officers extinguished the fire and arrested Taylor.

According to police, Taylor entered the Dunham store at 4:48 p.m. on Friday, December 12, 2014 and lit some cardboard on fire at the rear of the store near the where the guns and ammunition are on display.

The store's manager, armed with fire extinguishers, doused the flames but not before the store was filled with smoke, setting off the store's sprinkler system.

The Bedford Fire Department was alerted and spent hours ventilating the building.



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