Hattiesburg police arrest teen in fire at old high school

Published 4:05 pm Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Police have arrested a 17-year-old suspect in the May 29 fire that destroyed the old Hattiesburg High School.

A tip led to Monday’s arrest, police spokeswoman LaShana Sorrell said. Sorrell said the teenager, whose name has not been released, will probably be charged as an adult with arson and commercial burglary.

The old high school, an early 1900s-era building, was being renovated to house the University of Southern Mississippi’s arts department.

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The May fire was the first in a series of suspicious fires to plague the North Main Street Historic Neighborhood this summer.

Charles Collier, 25, was arrested June 2 in connection with two separate fires of passenger vans parked at Mount Carmel Baptist Church and a blaze at a two-story abandoned building.

Authorities said the investigation into the arsons is ongoing.