Burglary leads to house fire

Published 1:27 pm Monday, April 13, 2015

It’s not every day that a Virginia State Police arson investigator is called to the scene of a burglary, but that was the case on Saturday night in the 600 block of Chestnut Street.

That evening the resident had gone to the Franklin Police Department after having earlier discovered her home had been burglarized, said Capt. Tim Whitt, spokesman for the Franklin Police Department. When officers went to the scene at approximately 10:35, they discovered the place was engulfed in flames. Suspecting foul play, the state police investigator was called in for assistance.

After interviewing witnesses and further investigation, police put out a warrant on Trenton Darnell Gatling. He reportedly used to live at the residence but had been evicted. Gatling, 36, was arrested on Sunday when he was spotted at a business on Armory Drive and charged with breaking and entering, said Whitt. The suspect was remanded to Western Tidewater Regional Jail without bond.

Further charges could be issued once the laboratory results from the fire return from Virginia State Police.

The lab results could take several weeks, Whitt said. As of Monday morning, nothing has been reported stolen. The captain added that the house was destroyed by the fire.