TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Update: An Arkansas man has been arrested and charged with arson and criminal mischief after reportedly causing damage to utility boxes in Terre Haute.
According to Terre Haute Police Chief Shawn Keen, Robert Dean Woods of Arkansas was arrested after an investigation into video provided by ISU Police and downtown businesses. Keen said that Woods was in the area working as a contractor for a local cable company.
Woods has been charged with two counts of arson, a level 6 felony, and four counts of criminal mischief, a level 6 felony.
Original: Terre Haute Police are investigating an incident that occurred on New Year’s Eve, leaving damage to multiple utility boxes as well as trash receptacles downtown.
According to THPD Chief Shawn Keen, the events occurred at approximately 5:48 a.m. Saturday morning, when officers were called to Cherry Street for what was reported as a trash can fire.
When they arrived, officers reported finding a trash can that had been lit on fire as well as multiple utility covers removed, and wires cut inside in the area. Damaged electrical boxes and meters were also observed as well as a dumpster that had been set on fire. Keen said the damage extended from the intersection of 8th and Cherry northward to Larry Bird Avenue between 7th and 8th Streets.
Police released a video showing a man wearing dark clothing in the hopes that residents might be able to help identify him.
“The damage done was senseless and costs all of us who pay for these services,” said Keen.
Chief Keen said that the video isn’t the best, being from a distance, but hoped to have a better angle to distribute in the future as the investigation continues. For now, Keen asks anyone with information related to the incident to call the police at 812-238-1661.
Multiple utility companies and the street department were called in to repair the damage done.