Restitution Ordered for Fireworks Fire in Zumbrota
Zumbrota, MN (KROC-AM News) - Two Pine Island men who accidentally started a fire that caused over a million dollars in damage have been ordered to pay restitution that totals less than $14,000.
A Goodhue County judge has ordered 20-year-old Thomas Lejcher and 21-year-old Samuel McPhail to pay most of that money to two employees who lost their tools in the 2014 fire that destroyed three buildings at the Agri-Tech Industrial Services Company in Zumbrota.
The two were seniors at Pine Island High School when they set-off some illegal fireworks near a bonfire gathering. It was later determined that the smoldering remains of the fireworks ignited the fire. The two were sentenced to probation earlier this year.
The judge was asked to order restitution for the tools and a $760,000 claim by the insurance company that covered damages caused by the fire. The judge rejected the overall claim but did order Lejcher and McPhail to pay the $1,135 fee the company was assessed for fire services. The judge noted the insurance company can still seek a judgment against the two through civil court.