Two men were arrested on arson charges after they set two people’s property on fire with Molotov cocktails, according to investigators.
The Rincon Fire Department responded to a brush fire on Walter Samuels Road in Rincon at 1:15 p.m. on Dec. 9. Firefighters deemed the fire suspicious and notified the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office arson investigator, ECSO Chief Investigator Don White said.
Investigators recovered six unexploded Molotov cocktails that were in the area of the fire. Two witnesses interviewed at the scene were Christopher Malike Roberts, 18, of Rincon and Tommy Anthony Steeley Jr., 20, of Savannah, according to White.
“Due to discrepancies found in the statements of Roberts and Steeley, they were identified as suspects,” White said. “After further investigation, it was found that Roberts and Steeley started the fire that burned four acres of property belonging to two different victims.”
Roberts and Steeley maintain they had no malicious intent and they just wanted to see if the Molotov cocktails would actually work, White said.
Roberts and Steeley both were charged with two counts of arson and six counts of possession of destructive devices.
Steeley’s bond was set at $77,200 and he was released after six days in the Effingham County Jail, according to the ECSO Web site. Roberts remains in jail without a bond set.
A neighbor of one of the victims has set up a page on the fundraising Web site GoFundMe.com, at www.gofundme.com/ikkwk4.