Man with burnt feet charged with arson

 

 

MANHATTAN – A Will County man is facing multiple charges after allegedly setting a pole barn on fire in November 2020. According to the Will County Sheriff’s Department, on November 8th 2020, just after 11 pm, deputies were dispatched to the 9500 block of Pauling Road in Manhattan, where they located a 2017 Chevy Silverado that allegedly struck a utility pole. The injured driver, identified as 35-year-old Anthony Dvorak, was reportedly observed in a nearby field and was brought back to the scene. He was treated for severe burns on both his feet and other injuries. Police say, they found no sign of a fire in or around the Silverado. The vehicle was towed and during a later search, a handheld torch and a small lighter were reportedly recovered.

The same evening, at 11:00pm, 911 dispatch received a call from a husband and wife who live in the 11000 block of W. Pauling Road, stating that their pole barn was on fire. Upon deputy’s arrival, Manhattan and Peotone Fire were already on the scene and had extinguished the fire. During an interview with the homeowners, it was relayed that shortly after they saw their pole barn on fire. They also received Facebook community page photos from neighbors regarding a Chevy Silverado that had struck a utility pole. The couple believed they recognized the vehicle as belonging to Dvorak. They stated to deputies that they had recently had a falling out with Dvorak, had previous issues with him, and had cut ties with him regarding their friendship.

Frankfort Fire personnel arrived on scene and transported him to Silver Cross Hospital. He was treated for severe burns on both of his feet, facial bruising, a fractured nose and a cut above his eye. Deputies charged him at the hospital with the DUI and the other driving violations.

Deputies spoke with witnesses near the scene who stated that they observed the accident immediately following it and observed Dvorak with no shoes and burns on his feet while struggling to walk away from the accident. Deputies found no sign of a fire in or around the Silverado. The vehicle was towed and during a later search, a handheld torch and a small lighter were recovered.

The same evening, at 11:00pm, 911 dispatch received a call from a husband and wife who live in the 11000 block of W. Pauling Road. They stated that their pole barn was on fire. Upon deputy’s arrival, Manhattan and Peotone Fire were already on the scene and had extinguished the fire. During an interview with the homeowners, it was relayed that shortly after they saw their pole barn on fire they began receiving text messages alerts from Green Garden Township regarding a power outage caused by an accident nearby. They also received Facebook community page photos from neighbors regarding a Chevy Silverado that had struck a utility pole. The couple believed they recognized the vehicle as belonging to Dvorak. They stated to deputies that they had recently had a falling out with Dvorak, had previous issues with him, and had cut ties with him regarding their friendship.

Estimated damage to the barn and its contents was $300,000.

After several search warrants were secured and evidence processed, an arrest warrant for Anthony Dvorak was issued on February 11th. Dvorak turned himself in to the Frankfort Police Department on February 19th. He was booked in and immediately bonded out. The Will County Sheriff’s Investigation Division is announcing the arrest of Anthony Dvorak, age 35, of 28240 S. Walsh Road in Manhattan. Dvorak is facing charges of arson and criminal damage to property, both Class 2 felonies. He was also cited for DUI, improper lane usage, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident and operating an uninsured motor vehicle.