Lawyer says Jeannette man wasn't around when fires set
The attorney for a Jeannette man accused of torching three vacant properties in the city over the last three years said his client was not even in the city when the fires were set.
Defense lawyer Harry Smail Jr. said Roger W. Adair, 27, has an alibi for when the three homes were set on fire dating back to 2009.
“He lived in a different area then and therefore it was not possible for him to be involved with those fires,” Smail said during a hearing Thursday before Westmoreland County Judge Al Bell.
Adair lived miles away, in New Kensington, when the fires were set, according to Smail.
“He didn't have a means of transportation at that time,” Smail said.
Bell on Thursday gave Smail, who is court-appointed, permission to spend up to $3,000 to hire a private investigator to help prove Adair was not present when the fires were set.
Police contend Adair and a group of four other men, including his brother, intentionally set fires throughout Jeannette over a three-year period.
Adair was charged with arson in connection with fires at 509-551 Chambers Ave. on Sept. 3, 2009, 118 N. Fifth St. on Nov. 18, 2010, and 324 Chestnut St. on Feb. 3, 2012.
Adair's brother, Richard Adair, 26, is charged in connection with the Nov. 18, 2010, blaze and two other fires.
Jeffrey Robert Tierney Jr., 24, and John Raymond Horne, 21, are charged in connection with four fires set in the city, including one at the former Monsour Medical Center.
All are charged with arson, criminal conspiracy, criminal trespass and risking catastrophe.
Roger Adair and Horne are charged with aggravated assault in the February 2012 blaze because a firefighter was injured.
A 17-year-old juvenile accused in one blaze has been ordered to a fire-setter rehabilitation program.
Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Bicyclist injured in collision with construction vehicle
- Derry planning commission member joins council
- Mt. Pleasant hospital sets ‘exceptional’ example
- Podlucky mansion in Ligonier Township will go to sheriff’s sale
- Lab results questioned in fatal Mt. Pleasant car accident
- A Griffins great: Seton Hill soccer team supports 7-year-old honorary member
- Greater Latrobe elevates lacrosse teams
- Ligonier Township man jailed in alleged assault of police chief
- New York fuel cell company to add another plant in Mt. Pleasant Township
- Latrobe Municipal Authority to replace solicitor
- Jeannette school board adds network assistant