From Franklinton Police
On June 3, 2020, the Franklinton Police Department responded to an aggravated arson at a residence on Bene Street. On arrival, Officers located a fire that was quickly extinguished. Officers were able to obtain video surveillance from the residence which provided images of 2 individuals pouring an accelerant and lighting a fire.
The video was uploaded to our Social Media pages and with the public’s assistance, both individuals were identified. One of the suspected arsonists was determined to be a juvenile (16) and the other an adult identified as Mardeontae J. Lee (22) of Franklinton. The juvenile’s identity is not being released due to his age.
On June 20, Patrol Officers located the juvenile in Franklinton, the juvenile was interviewed by Investigations and subsequently confessed to his involvement in the crime. Detectives were unable to locate Lee and a warrant was issued for his arrest.
Today, detectives located Lee at his residence where he was arrested without incident. Lee was charged with 3 counts attempted first-degree murder (Felony), 1 count aggravated arson (Felony), 1 count contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile (Felony) and 1 count simple possession of marijuana (Misdemeanor) The investigation is on-going and it is believed to be in retaliation for an earlier homicide which occurred on June 1, for which Paul Robinson was arrested.
Chief Brown would like to acknowledge the outstanding work of our Investigators for their relentless pursuit of those responsible. Chief Brown went on to thank the community for their assistance in identifying both individuals. When the community and law enforcement work together, it makes our town safer for everyone.