By: Don Shaw email: don.shaw@pennsylvaniachronicle.com (570) 543-2961

Jury finds Michael T. Matthews guilty of setting fire to his own home in Ephrata

Jury finds Michael T. Matthews guilty of setting fire to his own home in Ephrata

Lancaster, PA

An Ephrata man was convicted at trial last week in Lancaster County Court of setting fire to his own house. Michael T. Matthews was found guilty of three felony counts, included aggravated arson, for setting fire to a house on Hoover Drive with a female relative also inside the home. Emergency responders rescued Matthews, 52, from a bedroom on May 14, 2018.

The jury deliberated about an hour following the two-day trial before deciding the case. Lancaster County Judge Margaret Miller scheduled sentencing in October, following a pre-sentence investigation.

Assistant District Attorney Susan Ellison presented testimony from an Ephrata police sergeant who testified that, upon arrival at the burning home, Matthews was at the front door and went inside and locked the door. Firefighters rescued Matthews from a bedroom. A woman got out of the home on her own.

One firefighter was treated at the scene and Matthews was hospitalized as a result of the fire.

A Pennsylvania State Police fire marshal who testified that the fire was intentionally set.