Hastings, NY – On October 8, at approximately 5:45 p.m., troopers from the Hastings barracks and fire personnel were dispatched to 296 White Road in the town of Parish for a report of a residential fire.
Investigation revealed that the fire was intentionally set and that the unoccupied residence had been burglarized by an armed perpetrator, as a 12-gauge shotgun round had been discharged inside the residence, troopers said.
Later that same evening, around 7:40 p.m., troopers from the Fulton barracks responded to County Route 29 in the town of Scriba for a report of a two-car personal injury accident in which the driver of a Chevy Tracker fled the scene on foot.
A short while later, troopers located the driver of that vehicle, 28-year-old, Benjamin M. Barnes, of 819 Rowlee Road, Fulton, and arrested him for driving while intoxicated.
While being processed for the arrest, Barnes was allegedly in possession of several items of jewelry that he had no reasonable explanation for possessing.
The following day, the jewelry was positively identified as that belonging to the victim of the White Road burglary and Barnes was placed under arrest for first-degree burglary, third-degree arson and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
Barnes had no affiliation with the victim and reportedly told investigators that he was high on “bath salts” while he committed the crime.
Barnes was arraigned by the Town of Parish and remanded to the Oswego County Jail in lieu of $10,000 cash, $20,000 secured bond.