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updated: 8/10/2012 7:58 PM

Elmhurst man faces arson charge in house fire

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  • Joseph Ziegler

    Joseph Ziegler


An Elmhurst man who authorities say set fire to a house in an unincorporated area near McHenry may have missed his target.

McHenry County Sheriff's officials on Friday charged Joseph Ziegler, 22, with setting the blaze on the 5100 block of Westwood Drive on Thursday. It was contained to the house and two vehicles parked in the driveway.

Investigators say that before the fire, Ziegler had been in a dispute with an unidentified person -- but that person did not live at the house where the fire was set. The house "was not the intended target and may be a case of mistaken identity," according to a news release from the McHenry County Sheriff's Office.

Firefighting crews from ten area departments responded to the fire at 4:45 a.m. Thursday. The homeowner was inside at the time of the fire but was able to escape safely. No injuries were reported.

A damage estimate was not available.

Ziegler, of the 200 block of Oak Street in Elmhurst, was formally charged Friday with arson, residential arson and aggravated arson. Bond was set at $8,000.

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