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Ponder charged in courthouse fire
Ponder W
A 52-year-old local man faces charges of aggravated arson after he allegedly set a fire in the courthouse Tuesday afternoon. City police took Gary Wayne Ponder into custody at his Old Mill Hill Road home Wednesday morning after a review of video surveillance reportedly revealed that Ponder took newspapers out of a recycling bin and lit them on fire with a cigarette lighter around 2:55 p.m. The fire caused several thousand dollars in damage to the courthouse, charring the wall behind the recycling bin and cracking a window near the flames. The entire first floor of the building suffered smoke damage as well.