Arson suspect waives preliminary hearing

Local News

A woman being held on $500,000 as a suspect in a Moline arson appeared Tuesday morning in Rock Island County Court to waive a preliminary hearing.

Lisett Garcia, 23, of Moline, faces charges of aggravated arson/knowing people were present, a Class X felony; and residential arson, a Class 1 felony, according to Rock Island County documents.

Local 4 News was the only station at the court session. Garcia, brought to a fifth-floor Rock Island County Courthouse courtroom from Rock island County Jail, spoke briefly with Judge Frank Fuhr.

“You understand by signing this document you’re waivinyour right to a preliminary hearing?” he asked her, and she said she understood.

A pretrial conference is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Nov. 25 in Rock Island County Court.

Moline Police Detective John Leach arrested Garcia after an incident Nov. 1 on the 100 block of 6th Avenue, Moline.

Class X is the most serious type of felony in Illinois, and includes crimes such as murder and other “elevated crimes.” Class X felonies have a punishment of a minimum of six years with up to 30 years and/or a fine of up to $25,000.

A Class 1 felony in Illinois is the second-most serious class of felony in Illinois, with a punishment of a fine up to $25,000 and/or four to 15 years in state prison. 

Local 4 News reached out to JC Fultz, public information officer for the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal.

Fultz said he could not comment on ongoing investigations, and advised Local 4 News to visit the office’s website for general information about investigations at https://www2.illinois.gov/sites/sfm/Pages/default.aspx

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Division of Arson Investigation is responsible for investigating suspicious fires and explosions throughout the state, the website says.

Arson and suspected arson are the primary cause of property damage because of fire in the United States and the second leading cause of fire deaths. Certified investigators respond to assist fire departments, communities, state and federal agencies 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Arson investigators are sworn peace officers authorized to interview witnesses, collect evidence, make arrests and appear in court.

​Accelerant-detecting K-9 teams can detect minute traces of accelerants often used in fires, and can lead investigators to a specific location where physical samples can be taken, analyzed and confirmed by special laboratories.

Arson investigators and K-9 teams investigate more than 1,000 fires annually, and arrest more than 100 arsonists each year.

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