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Grand jury indicts Arab man after house fire

By Sheryl Marsh
smarsh@decaturdaily.com 340-2437

A Morgan County grand jury has charged an Arab man, who authorities said set his ex-girlfriend's home on fire, with attempted murder and arson.

The grand jury returned the indictments against Stanley Keith Berry, 40, of 891 Marshall County 1828.

Sheriff Greg Bartlett said in September that Berry started a fire on the porch of Elizabeth Ann Thompson's residence at 1187 Alabama 36.

Bartlett said Berry allegedly started the fire after Thompson forced him to leave.

County investigator Jodie King said Thompson found the porch burning after Berry left and that she and her son extinguished the fire.

No significant damage

It did not cause significant damage, King said.

"He wanted to stay there because he didn't have a place to stay and she wouldn't let him," King said at the time.

Deputies arrested Berry, who had an outstanding warrant against him for failing to serve a sentence on a driving under the influence conviction.

Berry remains free on a $5,000 bond, according to jail personnel.

Court officials have not set a date for an arraignment hearing for Berry to face the charges and enter a plea of innocence or guilt.

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