FORT EDWARD — The Fort Edward teen arrested this week for allegedly setting a home on fire after a burglary spree was released to house arrest Wednesday following a hearing in Washington County Family Court.
The 15-year-old, whose name is being withheld because of his age, had been housed at a secure juvenile detention center since his arraignment Monday before Washington County Family Court Judge Adam Michelini. He was arrested earlier in the day for the Nov. 27 fire that destroyed 5 McKie St. in Fort Edward, and police believe he was responsible for an earlier home burglary spree in the area as well.
He was brought to court Wednesday for a “probable cause” hearing to determine whether he could continue to be held in detention. Police officers from Fort Edward and Hudson Falls were in court prepared to testify.
Instead, an agreement was worked out to allow the teen to return home under house arrest and electronic monitoring, with daily monitoring by the county Probation Department. Michelini warned that the teen must abide by the conditions of release or risk going back to secure detention.
“You could find yourself in a detention facility again,” the judge told him.
The prosecutor, Washington County Deputy County Attorney Daniel Martindale, also advised the teen that he had to avoid more trouble with the law and resume school.
His lawyer, Mark McQuerrey, replied that his client “fully understood” what he needed to do. The boy’s mother was in court and told the judge she was concerned about her son’s involvement with social media and said wanted him off it.
“There are rules in my house, and that is why he would take off,” she said.
The teen was arrested after Fort Edward Police, State Police and Hudson Falls Police determined he was responsible for the fire, which was set to cover up evidence of a recent home burglary spree, although police have not said how or why. The teen was acquainted with the owner, Shane Morehouse, and was part of a group of teens who hung out there.
Fort Edward Police Chief Justin Derway said guns and knives were among the items stolen during the burglaries, only some of which have been recovered.
Derway said additional arrests are likely, and police were meeting with the district attorney’s office and county attorney this week to figure out who should be charged going forward.
“There are a lot of different arms to this,” Derway said. “We are trying to figure out who was involved in what.”
Michelini adjourned the Family Court case until Jan. 29.