Mt. Vernon’s Strand pleads guilty to arson, several other crimes back to 2016

Steve Chapman

Jacob Strand

Felon sentenced to years in prison for multiple charges including arson, property damage, burglary, stealing, etc.
Mt. Vernon’s Jacob Strand was sentenced to prison on Tuesday, May 4, after pleading guilty to a multitude of crimes, including arson, property damage, forgery, delivery of a controlled substance and stealing.
The arson and property damage charges stemmed from an incident on Oct. 10, 2020.
Probable cause details vast offenses
According to the probable cause statement in the case, Strand’s landlord told a Lawrence County deputy sheriff that he’d told Strand the day before to move out for failing to pay rent, adding that Strand told him that he would be out by midnight. The landlord said he went to the apartment the next day to check on the place and when he arrived, it smelled like something was burning.
The deputy and the landlord entered the building; the deputy reported they found a candle still burning on an end table and a pile of “something” that had been set on fire in one of the bedrooms.  The deputy also reported finding the remains of a melted candle on the mattress of the bed, and another candle at the bottom of the pile in the bedroom. A propane wall heater was found in the living room with the gas set on pilot and another candle underneath it. Additionally, several obscene gestures and foul words were found graffitied in spray paint on the walls.
Additional crimes
The burglary, stealing and delivery of a controlled substance charges stemmed from an incident on Nov. 24, 2020, in which he was arrested for entering the home of another Mt. Vernon resident and removing items, including a laptop and pill bottle from the residence. According to the probable cause statement, the laptop and pill bottle were found in Strand’s residence. A search of two sacks that were found in the residence also turned up 21.27 grams of methamphetamine and 18.58 grams of cannabis.
Strand also pleaded guilty to forgery for writing a check for $475 to himself from another person’s checking account.  
Strand was sentenced to five years for second-degree arson, three years for first-degree property damage, seven years for second-degree burglary, five years for stealing, four years for forgery and five years for delivery of a controlled substance; his sentences will run concurrently. Strand was released from the custody of the Lawrence County Jail on Thursday, May 6; he’d been held there since Nov. 24, 2020. His immediate whereabouts could not be confirmed as of press time.
2016 crime
Strand, and several of his family members, made headlines in December of 2016 when they were arrested and temporarily held in the Lawrence County Jail after attempting to shield another family member, William “Scott” Hutchison, from arrest. When an officer warned them that they could be arrested for hindering prosecution, Strand and his other family members told the officer to arrest them; the officer obliged.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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