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TUESDAY, MARCH 20, 2007
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Man arrested in burglary, arson of chicken house

By Kristen Bishop
kbishop@decaturdaily.com · 340-2443

MOULTON — A Moulton man allegedly burned down a chicken house days after he was charged with burglarizing the building, said police.

Lawrence County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Jason Simpson, 28, of Lawrence County 2350 on Feb. 28 and his two accomplices on March 7 for allegedly breaking into a chicken house in Mt. Hope and stealing several tools and copper wire.

Simpson, Matthew Dale Nolen, 30, and Jerry Lynn Bryant, 30, both of 880 Lawrence County 49, Mt. Hope, were charged with third-degree burglary and second-degree theft of property.

The Lawrence County Jail released Simpson on March 2. Five days later, the chicken house went up in flames, said Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department investigator Lt. Tim McWhorter.

“I immediately suspected arson because (Simpson) had just been charged with burglarizing that same chicken house,” he said. “The other two had not been charged at that point.”

An informant reportedly told deputies on March 9 that Simpson had confessed to the arson. Upon further investigation, deputies were also able to link Joshua Abner Duncan, 19, of 3270 Lawrence County 59, Moulton, to the crime, said McWhorter.

The Sheriff’s Department charged Simpson and Duncan with second-degree arson and third-degree burglary Friday.

The Lawrence County Jail released Duncan on Friday on $10,000 bond. Simpson remained in jail Monday pending a bond revocation.

Investigators have also charged Bryant with theft at a Moulton residence at Lawrence County 127. Bryant, Simpson and Nolan are suspects in several other burglary and theft cases in Lawrence County, said McWhorter.

Bryant and Nolan remained in Lawrence County Jail on Monday in lieu of bond. Both men have holds on them for Franklin and Lauderdale counties where they both face additional charges for thefts.

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