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State Fire Marshal Investigation Leads to Pair of Arson Arrests in Oxford

By Anna Grace Usery

A recent State Fire Marshal investigation led to a pair of arson arrests in Oxford.

The Oxford Police Department and Oxford Fire Department responded to a possible structure fire at building 26 of the Links Aug. 14 at approximately 10: 53 p.m. OPD extinguished the fire in apartment No. 2, the report states. 

The nature of the fire alerted investigators with the Lafayette County Fire Department, OPD and state fire marshal to take a closer look.

Derrell Tyson.

Reports state the renter of the apartment, Derrell Tyson, 32, of Oxford, made inconsistent accounts about the fire.

During the interview Tyson admitted he planned the fire because of financial issues, according to officials. 

The interview with Tyson led to a subsequent interview with Raynaldo Ward, 26, of Coldwater, who officials later identified as the perpetrator who started the fire.


Raynaldo Ward.

OPD arrested Tyson Aug. 16 for 1st degree arson where and transported him to the Lafayette County Detention Center. Ward was arrested by the Tunica County Sheriff’s Department Aug. 17 for 1st degree arson. He was transported back to the Lafayette County Detention Center the next day.

Tyson and Ward were both given a bond of $100,000 by a Justice Court Judge.

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