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Washington Co. Man Charged With Setting Own Vehicle on Fire

September 24th, 2023 by WCBC Radio

WASHINGTON COUNTY, MD (September 23, 2023) - Deputy State Fire Marshals have charged a Washington County man after concluding that he intentionally set his van on fire after it had become stuck near a set of railroad tracks.

Around 9:15 p.m. Monday, the Office of the State Fire Marshal responded to the railroad tracks behind the area of 14635 Daley Road after deputies with Washington County Sheriff's were initially called for a vehicle driving on the railroad tracks. Deputies told investigators they observed a fire within a 2002 Ford Econoline van after arriving. Then they located the driver, identified as Merridth Richard Boyd, 50, of Hagerstown, lying nearby. Deputies requested the Maugansville Goodwill Volunteer Fire Company, which extinguished the fire. Boyd told firefighters and deputies he may have sustained an arm injury and was taken to Meritus Medical Center by EMS.

Investigators conducted an origin and cause investigation and determined that the fire originated within the van and, during their examination, located the remains of a couch inside. Witnesses later reported initially hearing an engine revving several times. Then they saw Boyd exit the van, and there was a fire inside the rear cargo area. They told investigators the driver then walked away.

On Friday, Deputy State Fire Marshals charged Boyd with second-degree arson and was transported to Washington County Detention Center. He was later released after posting a $10,000 unsecured personal bond.