A Savannah man suspected of starting several fires on the city's south side in 2011 was arrested Thursday.
Brian Jerome Powers, 50, was taken into custody after the Chatham County grand jury returned an indictment charging him with more than 12 arson fires in several jurisdictions dating back to 2008.
Powers was charged with first-degree arson in connection with a fire at a laundromat near the intersection of Waters Avenue and Montgomery Crossroads on Feb. 20, 2011. Savannah firefighters responded to four separate intentionally set fires in the 8400 and 8500 blocks of Waters Ave. during a 30-minute period that morning. Three of the fires were set in trash Dumpsters and one was set in the laundromat.
When Savannah firefighters arrived at the laundromat at 8414 Waters Ave. at about 2:20 a.m., they encountered smoke and flames in the rear of the business. After extinguishing the blaze, the firefighters were dispatched to dumpster fires at 8506 Waters Ave. and 8510 Waters Ave. The fires were extinguished without any extension to other building.
According to the 16-count indictment, Powers is also connected to a series of arsons in Pooler and could be connected to other fires.
"Looking up and down the street, there have been gazebos and front yards set on fire, garbage cans next to houses, and we've had two buildings at the Sanctuary Church that caught fire," said Assistant Chief Hugh Futrell with Southside Fire.
Evidence against Powers was presented to grand jurors on Wednesday. He was apprehended on Thursday and is being held at the Chatham County Detention Center.