Man charged with setting fire to grandmother’s home with dogs inside

EAST RIDGE, Tenn. (WTVC) — A man has been charged with arson and animal cruelty, among other things, after police in Tennessee say he set fire to a room in his grandmother’s house with two dogs inside it.

On May 5, East Ridge police and firefighters were called to a residential fire.

Police say they when they arrived, they found light smoke coming from the house. They spoke with a woman living there, who told them two dogs had been inside one of the rooms with the door closed. This was where officers say the fire had started.

The back door of the home was unlocked, and police say the woman’s computer and several other items had been destroyed in a bedroom in a separate room near where the fire began.

In an arrest report, ERPD officers said they uncovered evidence showing the fire was intentionally set, and discovered a bottle of vodka was missing from the home. The woman told police that her grandson Dustin Sneed was the only person who knew where the vodka had been kept.

Officers were later called to a business on nearby Ringgold Road, where witnesses told them Sneed had been inside and had dropped a bottle of vodka. The witnesses told police that Sneed then asked for matches and then left.

According to witnesses, as Sneed left, he started pouring the vodka out in front of the business’ exit doors and then threw the bottle beside the building. Police recovered the bottle and said it matched the bottle taken from the Kingwood Circle home.

Police also say Sneed had used the phone at the business in order to call his grandmother.

East Ridge police arrested Sneed on May 13, and charged him with aggravated arson, arson, aggravated burglary, aggravated cruelty to animals, and vandalism.

Police Chief Stan Allen said the two dogs are alive and OK.

*story by KUTV