DeFuniak Springs (WMBB)— A suspect in a structure fire is in custody after authorities suspect he ignited a house fire and stole a volunteer firefighter’s vehicle, officials wrote in a news release.
Just before 5:30 a.m. Friday, Walton County Sheriff’s deputies responded to Smith Road in DeFuniak Springs following the report of a structure fire. A Liberty Volunteer Firefighter arrived first, leaving his personal vehicle running while he got out to evaluate the fire.
A male covered in blood ran from the residence, stole the volunteer firefighter’s vehicle and fled. The suspect, later identified as William Larrick II, 38, was located on Royale Street in the DeFuniak Springs city limits and taken into custody.
The home on Smith Road was found to have suspicious materials inside. The State Fire Marshal’s Office arrived and requested a bomb squad respond, officials wrote.
“We originally thought that he had materials to build some sort of bomb in the house but the c-4 was fake, it wasn’t actual c-4,” Walton County Sheriff’s Office PIO Corey Dobridnia said.
Larrick II is facing a grand theft of a motor vehicle charge. The case is still under investigation.