Sheriff: Man Intentionally Set Fire at School
COLUMBIA, SC (WOLO)– Lexington County Sheriff‘s deputies have charged a 54-year-old West Columbia man in connection with two fires at a local school. Thomas Hartford Riley is charged with two counts of third-degree arson. Deputies say he intentionally set fire to one plastic garbage can and one garbage dumpster at Pineview Elementary School, 3035 Leaphart Road, West Columbia. One fire was set on July 30. The second fire was set on Thursday, August 30. Officers say they also found one pair of Riley‘s blue underwear on the top level of a jungle gym at the playground where Riley intentionally set the plastic garbage can on fire. Deputies found Riley hiding behind a tree near the playground at the elementary school, which is about one-half mile or about an 11-minute walk from Riley‘s home, Metts said.