ABILENE, TX – On Tuesday, August 2, 2022, at 2:19 a.m. Police and Fire responded to a call of a house on fire in the 1600 Block of Chestnut St. in South Abilene. The caller stated their home was on fire, and they were actively attempting to put it out. Crews arrived and learned that the fire had originated at a home located next to this house and spread to the second home, causing a second alarm.
The home where the fire originated was rented by 33-year-old Jay Hunter Pace and another male. Witnesses say Pace was on scene at the time of the fire but had since left the area.
Police had stopped him in the 4500 Block of South First St. for a separate incident and questioned him. A fire investigator was also present, and when he was questioned, Pace made statements that incriminated him in the fire at his home on Chestnut St. moments earlier. The first residence was a total loss, and the second residence is estimated to be damaged at $30,000.
Pace was taken into custody and charged with Second Degree Felony Arson. He is currently being held at the Taylor County Jail.
This investigation is ongoing.