W.Va. Arson Hotline Reward Increases to $5,000

By: Josh McComas Email
By: Josh McComas Email

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The West Virginia Arson Hotline Program has increased the reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.

Previously, the reward was $2,500, now the reward has been increased to $5,000.

The Arson Hotline program provides a toll-free number to speak with law enforcement investigators about any knowledge they may have concerning a suspicious fire and is completely confidential. The Arson Hotline number is 800-233-3473 (FIRE).

The increase in reward money was made at the request of the West Virginia State Fire Marshall’s Office and in conjunction with the West Virginia FAIR Plan.

The Arson Hotline Program was set up in the late 1980s and has paid out over $90,000 in rewards to more than 100 different callers. Funding for both the operation and the rewards comes from the West Virginia Essential Property Insurance Association, also known as the West Virginia FAIR Plan. The FAIR Plan is a not-for-profit association that offers a basic, affordable property insurance policy to those West Virginia property owners who have been unable to find such coverage in the voluntary market.

In just the first four months of 2012, the West Virginia State Fire Marshall’s office investigated 305 arson events. During that same time period the Arson Hotline received 55 tips which combined to shed enough light on 22 arsons with the potential for prosecution.

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