Suspect Arrested For Setting Fire To Tony’s Ice Cream Shop

GASTONIA, N.C. — A Gastonia man has been arrested for setting a fire at Tony’s Ice Cream Shop.


Police charged Marvin McCaskill with attempted murder and arson-related offenses for the fire at the iconic ice cream shop in August.


The Gastonia Fire Department reaponsded to the business on August 4 at approxiamately 5:45 am. Investigators determined that a fire been set inside.


An employee of Tony’s Ice Cream who was working inside the business at the time of the fire was not injured.


The Gastonia Fire Marshal’s Office conducted an origin and cause investigation and determined that the cause of the fire was incendiary in nature and contacted the Gastonia Police Department to begin a criminal investigation.


GPD detectives determined that the suspect broke a window to the business, threw a flammable accelerant inside the broken window, and fled the area.


During the investigation, detectives recovered DNA evidence from the crime scene. The suspect’s DNA was entered into a national DNA database and matched to McCaskill’s DNA.


On November 14, GPD investigators were notified that the DNA sample obtained from McCaskill was a 100% match to the suspect’s DNA recovered at the crime scene.


Investigators obtained a warrant for McCaskill’s arrest charging him with attempted first-degree murder, burning certain buildings, possession of a weapon of mass death and destruction, attempted malicious damage of occupied property by use of explosive or incendiary, and felony breaking and/or entering.


McCaskill was arrested without incident this afternoon