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Arson suspects have not guilty pleas entered

The two people charged in connection with a Dec. 29 fire on West Washington Street made their first court appearances Wednesday.

Jerome Horton, 39, of 403 W. Washington St., and Alisha Brooks, 32 of Lexington, were both arrested following the incident and after a pursuit with police through Winchester.

Horton is charged with first-degree arson for allegedly setting a fire outside a home at 403 W. Washington St., with a woman and three children inside. Brooks was arrested for first-degree fleeing or evading police for driving Horton from the scene and failing to stop for a Winchester Police officer.

Wednesday in Clark District Court, Judge Earl-Ray Neal entered automatic not-guilty pleas for both and scheduled a preliminary hearing for Jan. 10. District court judges can not take a guilty plea in a felony case.

If convicted, Horton could be sentenced to 20 years to life in prison, while Brooks could receive one to five years in prison.

Police said Horton threw a brick threw a window at the residence, before igniting gasoline outside. The fire caused minimal damage to the home, police said.

When officers apprehended Horton and Brooks at a Shell gas station on West Washington Street, Horton smelled of gasoline and was wearing only one shoe. Officers said his shoe matched one left behind at the scene, along with a gasoline can.

Horton and Brooks are jailed on bonds of $50,000 and $10,000, respectively, in the Clark County Detention Center.

About Fred Petke

Fred Petke is a reporter for The Winchester Sun. His beats include cops, courts, fire, public records, city and county government and other news. To contact Fred, email fred.petke@winchestersun.com or call 859-759-0051.

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