The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

October 23, 2013

2 charged in fire that destroyed cabin

JOHNSTOWN — Two people have been charged with arson in a blaze that destroyed an uninhabited cabin along Mountain Road in Lower Yoder Township.

Police said reports from confidential sources implicated Jessica Rene Montgomery, 24, of the 1800 block of William Penn Avenue, in the fire that occurred around 12:30 a.m. July 10.

The sources reported Montgomery was bragging about the night she, Jeremey Dick, 19, of the 700 block of Parkview Drive, and an unidentified juvenile drove a Chevrolet Tracker belonging to Montgomery’s father to the old cabin owned by Leann Dejaiffe.

According to a statement Dick made to West Hills Regional Police, the three were consuming alcohol before Dick poured rum on the floor and lit it on fire. Dick added nearby clothing to the fire, the juvenile added paper and Montgomery dragged a wooden dresser onto the pile, police said.

The three left when the blaze spread to the wall, police said.

The juvenile submitted a statement further implicating Montgomery and Dick, police said. Dick’s statement corroborated the information.

After documenting the confessions, police tracked down Montgomery and asked her to report to the station. She later called detective Sgt. George Musulin and said that her attorney advised her not to meet with him.

Montgomery was informed that criminal charges would be filed against her. She was arrested by Musulin on Friday.

Montgomery and Dick are charged with arson, criminal trespass and criminal mischief. Montgomery faces additional charges of corrupting a minor and furnishing alcohol to a minor.

Montgomery is lodged in the Cambria County Prison on $15,000 bail.

She is awaiting a preliminary hearing before District Judge John Barron of Stonycreek Township.

Justin Dennis is a multimedia reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter at

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