Photo: Levi Coon
With a name as unique as Ernest T. Bass, of Andy Griffith fame, but with fire instead of rocks as his weapon-of-choice, the Sonora Police Department tells the story of a local arsonist-to-be –
“34-year-old Levi E. Coon was arrested on Arson charges last night.
At 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, the Police Department received a 911 call regarding a male subject starting a fire near one of the gas pumps at the 76 Station on South Washington Street. Officers quickly arrived on scene and detained Levi Coon, who matched the description given by the anonymous caller.
During the investigation, officers learned that prior to lighting the fire, Coon had been in the area of the gas station yelling at people. It is alleged that Coon pulled a piece of vegetation from a nearby planter and began lighting it on fire near a gas pump.
Witnesses also said that Coon added a cigarette box to the flame and lit that on fire as well. An aware employee of the 76 Station bravely ran over and stomped out the flames.
Coon was arrested for committing arson during a state of emergency and was booked at the Tuolumne County Jail.
We would like to recognize the efforts of the anonymous caller and the employee who’s quick reactions helped avoid a potentially disastrous situation.”