Southeast Missouri Man Sentenced for Setting Fires on Federal Lands

MARCH 30, 2004 - Posted at 7:28 a.m. CDT

ST. LOUIS, MO - A southeast Missouri man has been sentenced for setting fires on federal land in Shannon County.

U.S. Attorney Raymond Gruender says Ricky Lee Prewett of Winona was sentenced to nine months on two felony counts of setting fires on two tracts of federal land.

A U.S. Forest Service investigation into the fires last April led to the agency to the 36-year-old Prewett, who later admitted he set the fires with a cigarette lighter and a lit cigarette.  One fire burned 42 acres, the other 25.

Prewett also was ordered to pay nearly $14,000 in restitution for timber damage and the cost of suppressing the fires.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)