Two men have been arrested and charged after investigators received a tip from the public regarding a fire that destroyed Valley Supply Hardware store in Rising Sun last month.
19 year-old Devon Radcliff, an employee of the store, and his accomplice, 19 year-old Curtis Taulbee were charged in Ohio County Circuit Court on the following charges:
Burglary (Level 5 felony), Conspiracy to Commit Burglary (Level 5 felony), Theft (Level 6 felony), Conspiracy to Commit Theft (Level 6 felony), Burglary Resulting in Bodily Injury (Level 3 felony), Conspiracy to Commit Burglary Resulting in Bodily Injury (Level 3 felony) and Arson Resulting in Pecuniary Loss at Least $5,000 (Level 3 felony).
According to the probable cause affidavit submitted by an investigator with the Indiana Fire Marshall’s office, Radcliff and Taulbee broke into the store, loaded several items into a wheel-barrow and then secured the items to Radcliff’s car, which was parked in the cemetery across the road from the hardware store. After stealing the items, the men returned to the store and used accelerants to ignite a fire in the store.
The affidavit says the men entered the store using keys Radcliff possessed as he was an employee of the store.
Investigators questioned both men, who admitted to the burglary and arson.
Investigators say the owners, Gary and Judy Copeland, have an estimated loss of over 1 million dollars.
Both men were placed under arrest and lodged in the Switzerland County Jail.