Arson suspect back in court; Charges reduced to 14 felony counts

Arson suspect back in court

YUMA, Ariz. - The 18-year-old accused of burning down the Mesa Heights apartment complex in January was seen by a judge Monday. 

Daniel Molina was told he'd be facing 136 charges last week. However, the judge reduced the number to 14 inside the courtroom at the Yuma Justice Center Monday afternoon.

Molina is facing 13 arson charges and one Class 3 felony for assisting a criminal street gang. 

Molina will be back in court Friday at 4 p.m. 

UPDATE (2:38 P.M.)

18-year-old Daniel Molina, one of four suspects accused of arson, appeared in court Thursday afternoon. 

Molina is facing more than 100 charges following the apartment fire that happened January 29th.

The public defender said they want to lower Molina's charges as it was just one act and not to be considered as multiple acts.

Molina's bond is set at $350,000 and is expected to be back in court Monday.


A Yuma man accused of arson will appear in front of a judge at the Yuma Superior Court Thursday. 

According to police, the suspect, 18-year-old Daniel Molina, is tied to a fire that destroyed several homes late January. 

Yuma police say three suspects are now facing charges following the apartment fire.

On Wednesday 18-year-old Daniel Molina and a 17-year-old male were located and arrested by Yuma Police Department officers.  Both are the primary suspects in this case.  They are being charged with multiple counts of arson and endangerment.  A 16-year-old male was also arrested and is being charged with conspiracy and witness tampering.

A fourth suspect, 18-year-old Devon Munson has not been located.  He is being sought and faces multiple charges of arson and endangerment.

This case is still under investigation.

The Yuma Police Department encourages anyone with any information about this case to please call the Yuma Police Department at (928) 373-4700 or 78-CRIME at (928) 782-7463 to remain anonymous.

UPDATE #1 – 01/31/2018: 

Over 20 properties suffered damage with 5 homes appearing to be a total loss. 

The fire has been determined to be Arson.  The investigation has revealed two males scaled a construction fence with a lighter and gas can.  They utilized the gasoline to initiate the fire.  The suspects fled the scene.  The investigation is on-going into identifying and locating the suspects.

ORIGINAL RELEASE – 01/29/2018: 

On Monday, January 29, 2018 at 3:35 a.m., the Yuma Police Department responded to a suspicious fire at Mesa Heights Apartment and several other residential structures, located in the 2100 block of Arizona Avenue, in reference to a fire.  The Yuma Fire Department was already on scene.

The initial investigation revealed the fire appears to be intentionally started. 

There were no reported injuries. 

This is currently under investigation.

The Yuma Police Department encourages anyone with any information about this case to please call Detective E. Fell at (928) 373-4744 or 78-Crime at (928) 782-7463 to remain anonymous.  Remember if your information leads to an arrest you may receive up to $1,000 cash reward. 

Information Released By:  Public Safety Technician Edith Ruiz

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