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Maryland State Fire Marshal

News Release Larry Hogan

Brian S. Geraci


State Fire Marshal

INDIAN HEAD RESIDENT CHARGED WITH ARSON OF DWELLING CHARLES COUNTY, MD (December 12, 2015) – Deputy State Fire Marshals concluded a two week investigation of an occupied dwelling fire with the arrest of Eric D. Grabis (36) of Indian Head. At 8:59 p.m. on November 30, 2015, nearly 30 firefighters responded to 4710 Strauss Avenue in Indian Head for a reported house fire. Charles County Sheriff’s Deputies arrived and used a portable fire extinguisher to contain the fire in the basement of the two-story single family dwelling. Crews from Indian Head, Potomac Heights, Bryans Road, Accokeek, Waldorf and Marbury Volunteer Fire Departments then checked for any remaining hot embers from the incident. Angela Grabis was transported to Fort Washington Medical Center for non-life threatening injuries and was treated and released. A roommate, Timothy Mendenhall was uninjured during the incident. Investigators determined that three separate areas of origin were ignited intentionally in the ceiling area of the basement and caused approximately $500 in damage to the structure and contents. A subsequent interview with Eric Grabis revealed he had intentionally set the fires by confessing to the incident. Grabis was taken into custody and transported to the Charles County Detention Center on charges of 1st Degree Arson and (2) counts of Reckless Endangerment. He is currently being held on no bond pending review on Monday.


The Office of the State Fire Marshal is an agency of the Department of State Police dedicated to helping protect citizens from fire and explosion through a comprehensive program of education, inspection, investigation and fire protection engineering. For more information on fire safety call 1-800-525-3124, log onto our website at: and/or

Media contact: Bruce D. Bouch, Deputy State Fire Marshal; 443-324-6876

1201 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville, MD 21208

2015 12 12 charles arson arrest strauss avenue  
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