Area man pleads guilty to lighting deck on fire

Published 10:18 am Thursday, February 16, 2017

Nathan Nolan

Nathan Nolan

Plea entered for arson charge

A Hartland man charged in connection to a fire in June in Albert Lea pleaded guilty to third-degree arson Tuesday in Freeborn County District Court.

Sentencing for Nathan Elliot Nolan, 32, is scheduled for May 11.

Court documents state Nolan was charged after the Albert Lea Police Department was dispatched the morning of June 13 to a residence on 11th Street on a report that a male had started a fire on a deck and was destroying items in the garage.

Upon arriving, an officer found the west side of the deck was on fire. The fire was later extinguished.

The homeowner said Nolan had been in the house, was agitated, kicked in two doors and caused some damage, court documents state. Nolan was reported as having tried to get car keys from someone in the house and ripping parts out of a vehicle — as though he was trying to hotwire it.

Damage was observed to a vehicle and the house, and a witness saw Nolan pour oil on the deck and assumed he had intended to set the oil on fire. 

Nolan is expected to be placed on probation, said Freeborn County Attorney David Walker.

Nolan was initially charged with multiple counts of first-degree arson, but those charges are expected to be dismissed at sentencing.

About Sam Wilmes

Sam Wilmes covers crime, courts and government for the Albert Lea Tribune.

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