The Glasgow Courier - Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

By A.J. Etherington
The Courier 

Arson Alleged in Sunday Morning Fire, Suspect in Custody


December 5, 2018

Valley County Sheriff Vernon Buerkle told the Courier that Kory Amundson has been charged with Felony Arson, Burglary, Criminal Mischief and Criminal Trespass in connection with an early Sunday morning fire on Glasgow's southside.

According to Buerkle, Amundson allegedly drove his truck onto the Montana Aviation Research Company's (MARCO) property on Sunday morning Dec. 2, at an unreported time and then hid in one of the structures. The vehicle was discovered and reported by company employees at around 10:51 a.m. after they also discovered foot prints leading into one of the company's structures.

According to Valley County Dispatch transcripts, a deputy was requested to investigate as the private security guard did not want to enter the structure unaccompanied. Chief Deputy and Sheriff-Elect Tom Boyer was dispatched to the scene and after a search of the area discovered and arrested Amundson, according to Buerkle.

Simultaneous to this occurring the Glasgow Police Department and Glasgow Fire Department were investigating a suspected arson fire on Glasgow's southside that was ignited in the early morning hours of Sunday morning. The fire was reported at 5:39 a.m.

Fire Chief Brandon Brunelle briefed the Glasgow City Council on Dec. 3, that 16 firefighters and every city truck responded to the incident. GPD Sergeant Robert Weber stated that immediately following the fire Brunelle suspected arson as the cause of the incident. "Fire Chief Brunelle had a feeling it was suspicious," explained Weber.

According to Sheriff Buerkle, after Boyer continued to investigate the crimes in Saint Marie, he was able to allegedly link Amundson to the morning fire and determine that a burglary and arson may have been committed there. It was unclear from law enforcement why they suspected a burglary.

Boyer would later link up with the Glasgow Police Department to continue the investigation. Dispatch transcripts of the incident indicate that GPD Officer Tim Fischer, Boyer and Deputy Jesse Vaughn executed a "consent to search a vehicle" Sunday afternoon in apparent connection with the case.

Valley County Sheriff's Office / For the Courier

Kory Amundson

Sergeant Weber told the Glasgow Courier that in the course of the investigation Amundson admitted to Deputy Boyer that he had started the fire and the details have been corroborated by the investigation. He continued, "It was definitely a joint effort between the Valley County Sheriff's Office, the Glasgow Police Department and Glasgow Fire."

Buerkle stated that the investigation remains ongoing and that the Valley County Sheriff's Office is working with the Glasgow Police Department and the State Fire Inspector on the case. Amundson made his first appearance in Valley County Justice Court on Monday, Dec. 3, in front of the Honorable Emery Brelje. He is being held on $100,000 bond and has been bound over to District Court to face the felony charges.


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