April 08, 2020

Brother, sister accused of arson in Sedgwick blaze

SEDGWICK – A local brother and sister have been arrested and charged with arson in connection with a fire that destroyed an Old County Road residence late Sunday night.

Michael Yurchick, 33, and his sister Amber Yurchick, 19, were arrested Monday. In addition to the arson charges, they were charged with burglary and criminal trespass, according to Sgt. Tim York, an investigator with the State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Michael Yurchick remained in custody at Hancock County Jail in Ellsworth as of late Monday afternoon. Amber Yurchick was released on bail. The two are expected to make their initial appearance in Hancock County Superior Court today.

The fire remains under investigation, York said. Because of that, he declined to discuss the details of how the fire started or how the brother and sister were involved.

The call came in at about 10:17 p.m. Sunday. The first firefighters were on the scene within about four minutes, and about three-quarters of the single-story building was ablaze when they arrived, according to Sedgwick Fire Chief David Carter.

Firefighters were faced with a problem when they arrived because the electrical entrance was located above the front door of the building. Shortly after they arrived at the scene, the wires let go and fell right in the doorway, Carter said.

“We had no chance of getting into the building through the front door the way we wanted to,” he said. “So we worked from the exterior and attacked from the rear door.”

Carter explained that most of the fire seemed to be in the rear of the building, so firefighters had wanted to work from the front in order to push the fire back into the area where it already had burned.

Firefighters got a quick knockdown on the blaze, but the fire had gotten a “pretty good start” and the building was considered a total loss. The building is owned by Herbert Carter of Sullivan. It was rental property, but neither Chief Carter nor Sgt. York had the names of the occupants of the home.

No one was injured in the fire.

About 40 firefighters responded to the scene. In addition to Sedgwick firefighters, there were crews from Blue Hill, Brooklin and Brooksville at the scene. Crews from Deer Isle and Penobscot stood by to cover the Sedgwick and Brooksville stations.

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