A volunteer firefighter from West Virginia was convicted this week after setting three separate fires that damaged nearly 60 acres in Green Ridge State Forest earlier this year. Initially charged with nine counts, including malicious burning, malicious destruction of property, and maliciously setting fires, Brian Twigg pleaded guilty to three counts of first-degree malicious burning.
According to his plea agreement, Twigg set fires on March 23, April 3, and April 4 in Green Ridge State Forest located in Maryland. The 20-year-old volunteer firefighter damaged 57 acres before his arrest on April 24.
Facing a maximum prison sentence of 39 years and a fine of up to $28,500, Twigg pleaded guilty on Tuesday to three felony counts of first-degree malicious burning. He was sentenced to four years in prison, with all but six months suspended, and placed on supervised probation for five years. Twigg was also ordered to pay $13,814 in restitution.
According to Maryland Natural Resources Police investigators, evidence and tips led to Twigg’s arrest earlier this year. A behavioral profile of firefighter arsonists found that most are between the ages of 17 and 26, with an unstable family history, and lacking in social and interpersonal skills. Approximately 100 firefighter arsonists are convicted every year in North America.