Woman sentenced to prison for setting Troy apartment fire

Shannon Melke

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Shannon Melke

A Troy woman accused of intentionally starting a fire inside a Troy apartment, then locking and deadbolting the door on her way out was sentenced Monday to four to six years in the Ohio State Reformatory for Women.

Shannon Melke, 43, originally was charged with first-degree felony arson in the March 15 fire at an Imperial Court apartment building. No one was injured in the fire.

The charge later was amended to second-degree felony arson and Melke pleaded guilty in Miami County Common.

Before sentencing, Melke told Judge Stacy Wall she apologized to everyone in the apartment building for her actions, which police said targeted a relative with whom Melke was angry.

Wall said Melke’s actions caused substantial financial harm. During an interview with police, Melke pulled a butane torch used to set the fire out of her bra, the judge said.

Although Melke had only a short criminal record, Wall said she hadn’t accepted full responsibility for her actions and admitted to using methamphetamines daily. A sentence of probation would demean the seriousness of Melke’s actions, the judge said. “You would be a continued risk to society,” Wall said.

Melke will receive credit for 55 days served in the county jail. She will be required to register as an arson offender annually for the rest of her life following prison release.

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