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Suspect arrested for Ox Bow tower arson

Police have arrested the suspect wanted in connection with the arson of Ox Bow County Park's observational tower.

Posted on May 2, 2011 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on May 2, 2011 at 3:43 p.m.

Police have arrested the suspect wanted in connection with the arson of Ox Bow County Park's observational tower.

Mitchell Keith Birr, 19, of Elkhart, was arrested around 6 p.m. Friday at the Elkhart Police Department. He was booked into the county jail at about 11 p.m. and remains in custody.

The arson charge, a Class B felony, comes with a $75,000 bond. He also was booked on a misdemeanor charge of alcohol possession and a misdemeanor charge of alcohol consumption.

A warrant was issued for Birr April 25. Investigators believe he caused the 38-year-old tower to catch fire the night of July 27, 2010. An affidavit filed by an Elkhart County Sheriff's Department detective said Birr admitted to burning the tower, but said it was an accident. He told the detective he threw his cigarette on the structure.


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