November 21, 2013

Falmouth firefighter charged with arson

From staff and news services

FALMOUTH – A Falmouth call firefighter was charged with arson Wednesday after turning himself in at the Falmouth Police Station.

Griffin Kline, 20, of Falmouth was arrested, charged with one count of arson and released, according to Town Manager Nathan Poore. Kline is scheduled to be arraigned Jan. 16.

Kline’s arrest comes two months after he was identified as a suspect in a fire that destroyed a wooden restroom structure on the Woodlands Club golf course. Kline lives with his family at a development adjacent to the golf course, Poore said.

The Sept. 14 fire, which was not discovered until the next morning by Woodlands staff, caused about $30,000 in damage. It was discovered several hours after firefighters responded to a suspicious dumpster fire at 161 Woodlands Drive in Falmouth.

Kline was placed on unpaid leave soon after the golf course fire. He has not been allowed to respond to fire calls and has been prohibited from entering town property, Poore said.

Call firefighters are part-timers who receive an hourly wage for each fire they respond to. Kline is not a staff member of either the Falmouth Fire Department or its Emergency Medical Services Department.

“Fighting fires and ensuring the safety of all people in this community is what we dedicate our lives to doing, so it is particularly disturbing to discover that the perpetrator was one of our own,” Fire Chief Howard Rice said.

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