Stringtown arson suspect arrested for burning three homes

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STRINGTOWN, OK -- This quiet neighborhood was ablaze with fear Tuesday morning.

Sheriff Deputy Greg Munholland responded to a fire along McGee Creek Road around 1 a.m. That's when he found out it was actually three fires - all within one mile.

"Definitely - with me - it was arson. It had to have been," he said.

On Wednesday the Atoka Sheriff's Office arrested Hank Magby, 51, of Stringtown.

He's charged with one count of first degree arson and one count of second degree arson, according to an affidavit.

Sheriff Tony Head said two homes were vacant - both owned by the same person.

And he says the owner is related to Magby.

"From what I understand it was a family dispute," he said.

Head said the third house was home to a family of four. News 12 reached out to the family, but they declined comment. No one was home at the time of the fire.

"They were common friends of the person believed to have set the fire," Head said.

Officials say all three fires were started within an hour of each other.

And Munholland said it was a scary night for neighboring residents.

"We actually spoke to a couple of residents who say they were gonna wait up all night, until somebody was caught, to watch their property," he said.

Magby remains in Atoka County jail on a $150,000 bond.

If convicted, he faces up to 35 years for first degree arson and up to 25 years for the second degree arson charge.

Authorities say it's still an open investigation. They say another person could be involved.

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