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A Suffolk County police officer was indicted on an arson charge Thursday
Prosecutors say that Weldon Drayton allegedly helped to start a fire in an abandoned home last October
Drayton is a former marine and member of the Central Islip Fire Department
A Suffolk County police officer was indicted on an arson charge Thursday.
Prosecutors say Weldon Drayton, a former marine who also was a captain with the volunteer Central Islip Fire Department, helped to start a fire in an abandoned home last October.
Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy Sini said Dayton ignited the fire so he could be the first to reach the scene and build stature within the fire department.
Drayton is also accused of allegedly trying to cover up the crime.
While no one was hurt in the October fire, Sini said Drayton put his community at risk.
Drayton’s been suspended without pay from the police department and ordered to stay away from fire department properties.
Drayton and his lawyer refused to comment on the charge.
Another volunteer firefighter was also charged in connection to five arson fires in Central Islip and Hauppauge between October 2017 and January 2018.
In March, three Suffolk County volunteer firefighters were arrested on arson charges in connection to nearly a half-dozen recent fires in New York.
Authorities said Central Islip firefighters Austin Lehman, 19, Stephen Hernandez, 25, and Shawn Key, 27, also put out the blazes they started at five abandoned houses in Central Islip and Hauppauge between October and January.
Authorities said the trio started blazes at 82 Gates Ave. in Central Islip on Oct. 21, 104 Vanderbilt Ave. in Central Islip on Oct. 24, 173 Gibbs Road in Central Islip on Nov. 7, 43 Oakdale Ave. in Central Islip on Nov. 22 and 475 Bridge Road in Hauppauge on Jan. 14.