WESTERLY — A Tennessee woman has been charged with arson in connection with a July 2017 fire that gutted a vacant home along Church Street in Bradford.
Westerly police on Friday arrested 25-year-old Kaitlyn D. Evans, of Cleveland, Tenn., and charged her with first-degree arson and conspiracy to commit arson. She was indicted on May 11 and taken into custody after the department was able to locate her, officials confirmed.
According to Rhode Island judicial records, she was formally arraigned Friday in Washington County Superior Court and immediately entered a not guilty plea to both charges. She was later released on a personal recognizance, according to court records, and is due back in court for a pretrial conference in June.
Westerly police confirmed Monday that the department had obtained the warrant following the formal indictment process. Officials confirmed that the arrest is related to a July 13 fire that took place in an abandoned two-family home at 150 Church St. in Bradford.
Additional information regarding the investigation was not released on Monday. Westerly Police Lt. Robert Warner said the agency is expected to release additional details in the next few days, noting that the case is still considered to be active.
Dunn’s Corners firefighters, assisted by the Westerly and Ashaway fire departments and Westerly Ambulance, doused the fire. It was initially thought to have been caused by an electrical issue. Then Acting Chief Keith Kenyon said at the time of the fire that the damage was “contained to an area that appeared to be an addition,” causing significant damage to the home.
The home, which was unoccupied when the fire occurred, was built in 1900 and was most recently purchased in 1992 by Wanda J. Ramsey Harney, of Charlestown, according to Westerly property records. It is appraised at $153,400.