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Published: Wednesday, 9/5/2012

Intimidation charged to suspect in house fire

Defendant accused of threatening witness

BLADE STAFF

A man charged with 15 counts of aggravated arson is accused of threatening to "take care of" a witness in the case, according to court documents.

George Hamblin, 49, of 1948 N. Superior St., now is also charged with intimidation of a witness. His bond was set at $50,000; jail records indicate he was released from the facility, but court records do not reflect how or if a bond was posted.

He is to appear in Toledo Municipal Court for a preliminary hearing on Oct. 2.

In documents filed in Toledo Municipal Court, Mr. Hamblin is accused of calling a witness to the arson case a "snitch" and threatening the victim.

A man who was reportedly with the suspect lifted his shirt to show the witness a gun, the documents state.

The 15 counts of aggravated arson stem from a June 17 fire at 1950 N. Superior St.

Authorities allege that Mr. Hamblin paid Gerald Kanavel III, 32, of 639 Woodville Rd., to set fire to the property.

Trial for Mr. Kanavel, charged with 15 counts of aggravated arson and one count of arson, is to begin Sept. 17.

He is held in the Lucas County jail in lieu of $1.52 million bond.

Officials have said that damage to the North Superior Street property was estimated at $8,300.

Lucas County land records valued the property, owned by Brad Eith of Toledo, at $12,800.

The aggravated-arson counts are based on the number of firefighters put at risk, Lt. Matthew Hertzfeld had said.



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