Arrest Made in Leonardtown Fire

LEONARDTOWN, Md. (Aug. 17, 2009)—Deputy State Fire Marshals have arrested a Leonardtown man in connection with an August 6 house fire. The 9:59 p.m. fire in the 40000 block of Hawk Court caused considerable damage to the two-story wood frame home occupied by Keiko Oppelt and her son. Deputy State Fire Marshals arrested Blake Elias Oppelt, age 22, Friday afternoon after he was discharged from St. Mary's Hospital.

The late night fire, reported by the homes security alarm system brought approximately fifty-firefighters from Leonardtown, Hollywood, Mechanicsville and Seventh District to the scene. It took over an hour for firefighters to bring the two-alarm fire under control.

Investigators after completing their scene investigation concluded the fire originated in the basement of the home and that Blake intentionally set the fire.

Investigators determined a verbal altercation had taken place between the mother and her son prior to the fire. When firefighters arrived Blake was discovered standing in the back yard with wounds consistent of being self inflicted.

Blake Oppelt was charged with 1st degree arson and reckless endangerment and is currently being held at the St. Mary's County Detention Center awaiting his initial appearance before a district court commissioner.

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