Polk man waives hearing in arson case

A Polk man accused of setting fire to a truck and causing an electrical system fault that destroyed a residence in Mineral Township last month waived his preliminary hearing Wednesday in Venango County Central Court.

Charges filed against Anthony DeMarco-Parker, 22, will now be bound over for further proceedings in the Court of Common Pleas.

A criminal complaint filed through district judge Andrew Fish’s office said DeMarco-Parker became involved in a verbal altercation with his mother on Sept. 7 regarding the poor health of his father at the residence on Parker Lane.

DeMarco-Parker began to throw furniture around the home after his parents left, the complaint said.

DeMarco-Parker also threw numerous glass canning jars at a chandelier near the center of the home, causing the chandelier to be unsecured from the ceiling, the complaint said.

A fault in the home’s electrical system ensued and, once he observed smoke coming from other light fixtures in the ceiling and smoke alarms going off, DeMarco-Parker fled the scene, according to the complaint.

Polk volunteer firefighters and other agencies assisted at the scene, but Franklin state police trooper Keith Johnson confirmed shortly after the incident that the home was no longer standing.

DeMarco-Parker then went to a nearby camp at 238 Parker Lane, which was locked, the complaint said.

Johnson said the camp was owned by a man from the Pittsburgh area.

DeMarco-Parker forcibly opened the back door of the camp and took about $10 in change, as well as a lighter from inside, the complaint said.

DeMarco-Parker then approached a 1998 Ford Ranger at the campsite and used a cinder block to break through the passenger side window, the complaint said.

After unlocking the door of the truck, DeMarco-Parker retrieved a piece of firewood and placed it in the center of the front seat, the complaint said.

DeMarco-Parker then used the lighter to ignite a torn portion of the seat cover on the passenger side of the truck before retreating to a hunting cabin behind the residence, where he observed smoke and heard numerous explosions, the complaint said.

DeMarco-Parker has been charged with felony counts of arson, reckless burning or exploding, risking catastrophe, burglary and criminal mischief-damage to tangible property by reckless or negligent use of fire/explosives, and a misdemeanor count of theft by unlawful taking.