• Man arrested in connection with arson at Boone Super 8 motel


    BOONE, N.C. - Police announced on Tuesday a man has been arrested on suspicion of intentionally setting fires in three different spots at a Boone Super 8 Motel in February.

    Ronnie Paul Bumgarner, 23, was arrested June 14 on one count of felony first-degree arson.

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    “The collected DNA sample from Mr. Bumgarner was sent to the North Carolina State Crime Lab to be compared with the DNA samples collected at the fire scene,” said Lt. Chris Hatton, investigations division commander. “The results of that comparison indicate that Mr. Bumgarner’s DNA was found on key pieces of evidence in this crime.”

    The fires were set Feb. 7 and caused serious damage in one area of the Super 8 motel on Highway 105 in Boone.

    According to officials, Bumgarner was on the scene during the fire. An investigator interviewed him at that time, but he denied setting it.

    There were many people sleeping in the hotel at the time, but no injuries were reported.

    Bumgarner’s bail was set at a $250,000 and he is scheduled to appear July 26 in Watauga County District Court.

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