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More charges lodged against suspect in arson, vandalism

SoVaNow.com / November 29, 2017
A Clarksville man faces new charges in connection with an Oct. 4 arson attempt at a home in Merifield Acres near Clarksville and a second incident that same evening involving the destruction of Sue’s Place gift shop on College Street in Clarksville.

On Monday, grand jury indictments against Dan Barden were released, charging the Clarksville man with attempted murder, three counts of vandalism and one count of breaking and entering. Barden had previously been charged with arson after first being arrested Nov. 2.

The new charges arise from the crimes that began on the night of Oct. 3. According to police reports, Barden is suspected of setting fire to a home on Ridge Road in the Merifield Acres subdivision. The homeowners were in the house at the time. While no one was injured and the blaze never fully ignited, flames from the fire melted the siding near the garage entrance.

The attempted murder charge arises from the fact the homeowners were inside the structure at the time the blaze was started.

Sgt. Tim Garner with the Clarksville Police Department said the events leading to the additional charges of vandalism and breaking and entering took place in Clarksville.

On the same night as the alleged arson, Barden is accused of breaking into and vandalizing the shop on College Street owned by the people whose house was burned in Merifield Acres. Nearly every item inside the store was smashed or destroyed, water was turned on and allowed to flood the building, and foam insulation was sprayed on the walls and floors throughout the upstairs and downstairs. Red spray paint was used to paint crude and obscene messages on the siding outside the building.

According to Meherrin River Regional Jail records, Barden is incarcerated. His next court hearing is set for Dec. 14 in General District Court in Boydton.

The charges against Barden and the arrest in the case stemmed from a joint investigation conducted by Sgt. Garner with the Clarksville Police Department and Investigator Jason Seamans with the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office.

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