COLUMBIA, S.C. — A man accused of intentionally setting fire to two homes owned by Gov. Henry McMaster is now a suspect in a third case.
Frank Wilberding, 21, was named a suspect after two homes on Greene Street went up in flames around 6:30 a.m. Tuesday. The fire required a second alarm, with about 40 firefighters from 15 units responding to the call.
About 19 people lived in those homes, which are owned by the governor, but they were all able to evacuate safely with no injuries.
Wilberding was apprehended near the scene and initially charged with two counts of arson second-degree and possession of a controlled substance.
Then Wednesday, Columbia police announced a third second-degree arson charge against Wilberding. This charge stemmed from an intentionally set fire at 1828 Greene Street, also on May 14, according to a report. Flames from this fire didn't spread to any other homes.
Damages to the two originally reported houses were estimated at $450,000. Police did not announce additional costs with the third charge, or if the home was also owned by McMaster.
A motive is still unknown in this case. Wilberding will appear in bond court Thursday morning.