Homeowner apprehends business in Ohio
July 3 — SALEM TWP. – Police said a man from Salem Township set his own business on fire on Thursday, then fled the area.
Michael Beck, 31, was apprehended in Dublin, Ohio on Friday, according to Luzerne County Prosecutor Sam Sanguedolce.
Beck faces a number of charges including arson, reckless fire, disaster risk, reckless endangerment, multiple counts of endangering the welfare of children and a count of criminal mischief.
It all comes after police say Beck burned down The Rage Room, a Salem Township business Beck owns that focused on letting customers smash things to get rid of an assault.
According to an affidavit, the investigation began after calls arrived shortly after 9 p.m. Thursday from a woman identified as Madalyn Fisher, who said The Rage Room had just been set on fire.
“There’s gasoline everywhere; there are men screaming because of Malcolm,” Fisher said.
When officers arrived at the scene, they found an individual named Malcolm Plevyak at the scene, using several fire extinguishers in an attempt to put out the blaze. Plevyak, according to the report by Times Leader information gathering partner FOX 56, owns the property, while Beck owns the business.
The affidavit states that the Salem Township Fire Company extinguished the blaze within an hour.
Officers interviewed a witness present at the scene, an employee of the company whom the affidavit only identified as “KS”
According to the affidavit, KS said Beck texted her asking if all the customers were gone for the day.
KS said Beck went out and was arguing with Plevyak, then said he heard Beck yelling at his 10-year-old son, telling him to go home. Beck, according to KS, followed his son home. Court records show Beck lived in only a few houses on the same street as The Rage Room.
When Beck returned, KS said he had a red five gallon gas can. KS said Beck told him and another witness that “they had a little time to get out”. KS and the other witness left the building.
He said he tried to plead with Beck not to set the building on fire. But Beck would have gone home and come back with matches. He said he saw Beck appearing to set the building on fire.
State Police Fire Marshal Karrie Dodson determined that the cause of the fire was arson, the affidavit states.