By BRIAN BOHNERT
The three suspects accused of starting a fatal house fire in Fostoria last month will now face arson and murder charges out of Seneca County.
Shey L. Weiker, 31, and Charles V. Schaeffer, 44, both of 151 Taft Blvd., and Timothy D. Hall, 20, of 126 Findlay St., were indicted by the Seneca County Grand Jury in papers filed Thursday on charges stemming from a Memorial Day arson that killed a man and a woman, and injured another woman on 614 S. Poplar St.
Weiker, Schaeffer and Hall are accused of starting the fire at around 3 a.m. May 26 that killed Daniel Marker Jr., 48, who lived in the South Poplar Street house, and Tara Lynn Vance, 44. The injured woman was identified as Dana Weatherall, 49.
Weiker is charged with aggravated arson, a first-degree felony; aggravated murder, a special felony; murder, a special felony; and attempted murder, a first-degree felony, for allegedly throwing a lit railroad flare toward the porch of the residence because Marker had supposedly committed a sex crime against her son, according to court documents.
If convicted, Weiker could face a maximum sentence of life in prison.
Schaeffer, who allegedly instructed Weiker how to ignite the flare, faces charges of complicity to aggravated arson, a first-degree felony; complicity to aggravated murder, a special felony; complicity to murder, a special felony; and, complicity to attempted murder, a first-degree felony. He too could face a maximum prison term of life.
Hall, who is accused of allegedly disposing of evidence, faces charges of tampering with evidence, a third-degree felony, and two counts of obstructing justice, a third-degree felony. According to court records, he allegedly disposed of the flare’s strike cap by throwing it into the sewer system in the 100 block of Taft Boulevard.
If convicted, Hall faces a maximum prison term of nine years.
According to Interim Fire Chief Warren Digby, the initial fire call came in via 911 at 3:05 a.m. advising of people trapped inside the home.
The three suspects were taken into custody the afternoon of the fire after officers executed a search at 151 Taft Blvd., at which time they also collected various items as evidence.
Weiker, Schaeffer and Hall are being held in Seneca County Jail on their respective bonds, all of which were carried over from Tiffin-Fostoria Municipal Court with no date set for future bond hearings, a court representative said Thursday.
Weiker and Hall are being held on $2 million bonds while Schaeffer continues to be held on a $1.5 million bond.
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