Piqua woman charged with aggravated arson

Total losses estimated at $115,000

By Sam Wildow - swildow@aimmedianetwork.com

PIQUA — A Piqua woman was charged with arson after a fire destroyed a house last week.

There is an active warrant for Katharine K. Wells, 56, for first-degree felony aggravated arson, but she is currently believed to be receiving mental health treatment. The alleged arson took place at a residence on the 200 block of Janet Drive in Piqua on Aug. 23 at approximately 12:30 a.m.

“The house was a complete loss,” Deputy Chief Jason Preston of the Piqua Police Department said. According to the Piqua Fire Department, the property loss was estimated at $100,000 and the loss of the contents inside the home was around $15,000.

“The fire department told us it was intentionally set,” Preston said. Wells is believed to be the owner of the house and was the only occupant at the time of the fire.

“She made a statement she set her curtains on fire,” Preston said. “She does have mental health issues.”

Preston said that Wells made other statements that did not make any sense, but she reportedly made the statement about setting her curtains on fire in front of multiple witnesses. It is not believed that she was attempting to hurt anyone or that she was attempting collect any insurance money.

“Nobody was injured,” Preston said.

The hope is that – through charging her – the police department will be able to get her more help for her mental health through resources within Miami County’s criminal justice system. According to Preston, Wells will be taken into custody once she is released from where she is currently receiving mental health treatment.

“Then hopefully we’ll get her some more help,” Preston said.

Total losses estimated at $115,000

By Sam Wildow


Reach Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336

Reach Sam Wildow at (937) 451-3336