Man charged with setting ex-girlfriend’s house on fire

(St. Joseph News Press) – A 36-year-old man has been charged with second-degree arson after allegedly setting his ex-girlfriend’s house on fire.

Khayree A. Darton was charged in the early morning fire at 1618 S. 17th St. that also displaced three children. According to a probable cause statement from Officer Eric Powell of the St. Joseph Police Department, Darton intentionally set fire to his ex-girlfriend’s house when she ended their relationship.

According to Powell’s statement, Darton and his girlfriend were in a two-year relationship with ongoing domestic assault issues. Early Thursday morning, she told Darton she wanted to end the relationship and started to leave the residence.

As she was leaving, Darton said, “that’s why I caught your house on fire,” according to Powell’s statement.

The girlfriend left and returned to her home about seven minutes later. It was fully engulfed. No one was home at the time, and no injuries were reported. The house was a total loss.

Darton has previous convictions for assault and domestic assault. He was denied bond on the arson charge, and is set to be arraigned 9 a.m. Tuesday, April 12 before Associate Circuit Judge Keith Marquart.