Police: Man admits to starting Westmoreland County motel fire

A man has been arrested and charged for setting fire to the Knights Inn motel in South Greensburg after police say he admitted to intentionally starting the blaze.

Matthew James Nicholes, 47, was in court this morning, facing charges including arson.

An officer was investigating the fire Thursday when he was called to the Westmoreland County Courthouse, according to the complaint. An officer said Nicholes was at the entrance of the courthouse, saying he had just burned down the Knights Inn.

When he was questioned, Nicholes allegedly told officers he burned “the stand” with a lighter in his room.

Crews were called to the motel in the 1200 block of S. Main Street just before 11 a.m.

PHOTOS: Crews respond to fire at motel in Westmoreland County

Firefighters say when they arrived on the scene, heavy fire was coming from one of the motel units.

Police assisted in getting everyone out of the neighboring units.

Matthew White, the chief of the South Greensburg Volunteer Fire Department, said crews were able to put the flames out quickly.

Everyone in the motel was quickly evacuated and there were no injuries.


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