Over the weekend, eight horses were burned alive in their rural Ohio barn in an arson attack on a property owned by a gay man. The words "fags are freaks" were found spray-painted on the barn. Today a $5000 reward has been offered for the name of the perpetrator.
Brent Whitehouse hopes a reward of up to $5,000 offered by the Blue Ribbon Arson Committee will help find the person responsible for setting a fire that killed his horses and destroyed his barn Sunday night. The State Fire Marshal's Office has ruled the fire was arson. Derogatory statements were painted on the barn walls and doors just before the fire, said Shane Cartmill, spokesman for the fire marshal's office. Whitehouse said because of those statements, the fire marshal's office is looking at the possibility of a hate crime. The reward, sponsored by the Ohio FAIR Plan Underwriting Association, works with law enforcement, firefighters and insurance industry personnel in an effort to combat arson. The fire marshal's office is asking anyone with information regarding the fire to contact them.