North Carolina man sentenced to prison, supervised release and ordered to make restitution for attempting to burn business

Published 11:28 am Thursday, January 13, 2022

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An Autryville man was sentenced December 16, 2021 to 30 months in prison, three years of supervised release and ordered to make restitution on a charge of malicious damage to property used in commerce in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 844(i), according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of North Carolina.

According to the indictment and statements at the sentencing hearing, Joshua Ray Powell, 27, of Autryville, and his brother Justin Powell, aiding and abetting each other, attempted to destroy by fire the Skills Gaming Center, located at 14260 NC 210 South, in Spring Lake, North Carolina.

“Joshua Powell jumped a fence and doused the exterior of the building with gasoline,” stated the release. “After making a gasoline trail from the building, he ignited the fire. Despite these efforts, the building was not ultimately destroyed. When confronted later, Joshua Powell admitted to his role in the fire.”

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Charges against Justin Powell remain pending, noted the release.

Michael F. Easley Jr., United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, made the announcement. The investigation was conducted by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation with the assistance of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant United States Attorney William M. Gilmore represents the United States.