Man accused of using Tiki torch to set Leander-area home on fire

Crime

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — The suspect in the arson of a Williamson County home on Wednesday evening has been arrested by SWAT officers with the help of a DPS helicopter.

Sheriff Robert Chody said in a tweet that Garry Lee Dill, 59, was taken into custody Friday on an arson charge for the July 4 house fire in the 700 block of County Road 270, just north of Leander.

Witnesses saw Dill approach the home with a lit Tiki torch, the sheriff’s office said, followed by the porch catching on fire. 

Dill has been booked into the Williamson County Jail at least 14 times since 2002, online records show, including arrests for assault, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and deadly conduct.

His latest arrest is not yet showing in the online system.

According to a recording from one of the witnesses who asked why he did it, Dill replied that it was because people weren’t paying rent.

A neighbor told KXAN her husband and brother-in-law ran to the back door of the burning house to help seven people get outside before firefighters arrived.

“There was a lot of smoke,” Kerrie Jowers said at the time, “so we got them some water and some blankets and gave them some resources to different churches in the area and contact information for the Red Cross.”

Video of the House Fire

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