Bowden man arrested on arson charges

A Bowden man was arrested on arson charges after an incident at his mother’s house, police said.

Jeffery Harper, 23, was arrested for arson in the fourth degree on Saturday, according to Randolph County Magistrate Court records. Bond was set at $10,000 cash only by Magistrate George M. Riggleman. Harper was being held in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail at presstime.

Around 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sr. Trooper J.J. Cornelius of the Elkins detachment of the West Virginia State Police responded to a call at about 2 p.m. Saturday from Harper’s mother at her residence located near Bowden.

Harper’s mother told officers her son became angry because she answered the telephone, according to the police report.

She further stated that Harper “forcibly removed the phone cord from the wall and began to break items in the house including a lamp and a clock,” the police report stated. Harper’s mother allegedly said her son set a roll of paper towels on fire, then left her residence.

Harper’s mother told police that his actions scared her, the report states. At the scene, officers fround a broken lamp, torn phone cord, a paper towel holder that appeared to be burned and a black spot on the wall above the holder as well as ashes from some sort of burned debris.

About 30 minutes later, Cornelius obtained a handwritten statement from Harper, who advised that he had been angry with his mother for calling him names and yelling at him, according to the criminal complaint.

Harper allegedly told police he threw some pictures around, broke a candle, broke a lampshade, and threw a clock into the wall. He also indicated he lit the roll of paper towels on fire with a lighter he found on the counter as he walked by, the complaint states.

Contact Chad Clem by e-mail at cclem@theintermountain. com.