ELKHART — The first of three teens charged with the arson of the vacant Goshen Inn appeared in Elkhart Juvenile Court on Monday, Aug. 26 and admitted to the charges against him.
The Goshen 15-year-old was charged with burglary, arson and criminal mischief in the Aug. 12 fire.
The teen, under questioning by his attorney, admitted that he and two other 15-year-olds broke into the hotel on Aug. 12 through a window and collected items from within the hotel to start a fire.
He also admitted that sometime between July 31 and Aug. 4 he, the other teens and Erik Bedell, 21, entered the hotel through the same window and damaged windows, mirrors and other property inside the building.
Magistrate Deborah A. Domine ordered the teen be placed on supervised probation with electronic monitoring, complete 100 hours of community service, delete his Facebook account and any other social media accounts he may have and have no contact with the other teens involved in the incident. He must also participate in the victim-offender reconciliation program and a fire safety program and undergo an addiction assessment.
“This is a very serious offense,” Domine told the teen, citing the extensive damage to the hotel and the eyesore it has created for the community.
The three juveniles were arrested on Aug. 15.
The other two teens charged in the arson are scheduled to appear in juvenile court on Tuesday and Friday.
Because they were charged as juveniles, the names of the juveniles have not been released.