UPDATE 05/15/2017 at 4:00 PM.
The suspect in the two arson cases from this morning, 42 year old MARK MUCHA, is now in custody. MARK MUCHA surrendered himself at the Ozark County Sheriff's Office in Gainesville, Missouri this afternoon. MUCHA faces felony arson charges and will be extradited to Baxter County by way of the normal transfer and extradition process.
The Baxter County Sheriff's Offices wishes to extend its appreciation to all law enforcement agencies and officers who participated in the search for MARK MUCHA.
The Sheriff’s Office is investigating two residential structure fires that were reported early this morning. Both fires are being investigated as arsons, and the Sheriff’s Office is searching for the suspect, who is the owner of both residences.
The first fire was reported this morning at approximately 3:19 AM at 952 Hickory Flats Ln in Lakeview. The second fire was reported at approximately 5:19 AM at 97 Buffalo Rapids Ln in the Buffalo City area. Fire Departments responded, but both residences were destroyed.
Law enforcement is searching for the owner of the residences, who is identified as 42 year old MARK MUCHA. He is believed to be driving a 2010 Toyota Pickup Truck, greyish-brown in color, bearing Arkansas License Plate No. 395UWW. MARK MUCHA is known to have engaged in violent and threatening behavior in the recent past, and he is believed to be armed.
If anyone observes MUCHA or his vehicle, you are asked to contact the Sheriff’s Office, but do not attempt to approach him. He could pose a danger to anyone attempting to contact him. We have been searching for him, but he has not yet been found.
Baxter County Sheriff’s Office