Arrest Made in Arson/Burglary Case in Holgate

Feb 22, 2018

A Ship Bottom man has been charged with second degree aggravated arson and third degree burglary in connection with an incident last month in  Long Beach Township. Colin D. Kerlin, 28, is in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.

In  a statement released Feb. 21, Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato said the arrest stems from the investigation begun on Jan. 21, when the Long Beach Township police and surrounding fire departments were dispatched to 8 West Scott Drive in the Holgate section of Long Beach Township for a report of a structure fire.  Upon the arrival of emergency personnel, heavy smoke and fire were observed coming from the southeast side of the structure. After the fire was extinguished, it was determined that the house was unoccupied for the winter. Witnesses reported seeing a white male running from the area shortly after the fire was reported. The scene was secured by the township police and notification was made to Deputy Fire Marshal Brian Mount and the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Arson Unit.

Coronato said the subsequent investigation found evidence of forced entry to a window on the west side of the home. The origin of the fire was on top of a mattress in the master bedroom located in the southeast corner of the residence. The cause of the fire was determined to be incendiary due to an open flame to available combustibles, specifically the mattress. As investigators were determining the cause of the fire, information was also being developed identifying Kerlin as the alleged person responsible. E.E.

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