Pennsylvania Fire Law: Criminal Edition

Two criminal cases from Pennsylvania are in the fire law news today. Both involve 21-year-old volunteer firefighters. In Redstone Township, fire captain George A. Matis, 21, stands charged with criminal homicide in the shooting death of junior firefighter Parker Hess in the Republic Volunteer Fire Company’s station. Hess was a high school sophomore.

The incident occurred yesterday as the department was preparing for its “Light Up Night” parade. Dave Statter has much more coverage of this tragic event.



In Glenolden, 21-year-old John Corcoran IV pled guilty to setting three fires with a 17-year-old accomplice. Corcoran, who has already pled guilty to over 20 federal child pornography charges, still faces 223 child molestation and related charges in state court. He was a member of the Goodwill Fire Company #1 in Darby. The arson investigation is what led investigators to the uncover of his sexual predator activities. Here is more on that story.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.

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