GREENSBORO — A Richmond County man will spend the next 12 years in a federal prison after being convicted in an arson case.
Corey Lamont Carter, 45, was sentenced by Chief United States District Judge Thomas D. Schroeder to 151 months Thursday after being convicted of “maliciously damaging and destroying by means of fire or an explosive a building used in interstate or foreign commerce, specifically rental property” in January 2022, according to a press release from the office of the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina.
Deputies with the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office responded to a structure fire at 199 Dixieland Drive around 1:37 p.m. on Jan. 24, 2022. The home was reportedly fully engulfed in flames when deputies arrived.
The occupant, who was not named in the recent press release, nor the one initially issued by the sheriff’s office last year, reportedly told deputies that she and her son made it out safely and that Carter, her ex-boyfriend, had started the fire.
“The occupant told deputies that she and Carter had an argument and she walked outside to call police,” the federal press release reads. “She then noted, after turning back towards the residence, that it was on fire. Carter then fled the scene.
The press release goes on:
“A short time later a resident of the Maner Road section of Rockingham reported to deputies that she saw a man matching the description of Carter running north on U.S. 1 carrying a gas can. The caller told deputies that he then ran to an abandoned two-story white house near the wood line. As deputies approached the front door to the home, the door slowly opened and Carter walked out of the home with his hands up. Deputies detained Carter and confirmed his identity. As he was being escorted to a patrol vehicle Carter spontaneously stated, ‘I know what ya’ll looking for, the gas can it’s in the house.’ Carter was then placed under arrest. Incident to arrest deputies located two books of matches and a lighter in Carter’s left front pocket. Deputies also recovered the gas can from inside the abandoned home. In a post-Miranda statement, Carter admitted to having set the fire at 199 Dixieland Drive. The residence was being used as rental property at the time of the fire with a tenant living in the home, and the fire resulted in a complete loss, including contents.”
Carter was initially charged with two counts of attempted first-degree murder.
The case was also investigated by the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation and after reviewing evidence and witness statements agents concluded “that this fire was ignited when a person, presumably Carter, poured an unknown ignitable liquid on the floor in the bedroom located at the end of the hallway and up the hallway to the kitchen, and then introduced an open flame through a lighter, match, or similar device which ignited the vapors. The fire then spread through the available combustibles inside the house. The fire was classified as incendiary in nature.”
In addition to the prison sentence, Carter was ordered to serve a three-year term of supervised release, pay $11,500 in restitution and a $100 special assessment.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Clifton T. Barrett prosecuted the case.
Records with the N.C. Department of Adult Correction show Carter was convicted of second-degree arson in 1998 and he was incarcerated for fewer than 16 months.
Carter was first convicted in 1993 on three counts of misdemeanor larceny over $200. His probation was revoked and he served 13 months of a four-year sentence.
In 1995, Carter was convicted of possession of a Schedule II controlled substance and resisting a public officer.
Carter was convicted of misdemeanor breaking and entering in 1997, which appears to have been upgraded to a felony when his probation was revoked, landing him behind bars for nearly six months.
He was also convicted in 2000 of felony larceny and being a habitual felon and served more than seven years. While in prison, he was convicted in 2003 of assault inflicting serious injury in Nash County.
After being released in July of 2008, Carter found himself again incarcerated in September for 17 months following a conviction of breaking and entering.
Records show Carter was convicted in 2010 on two counts each of breaking and entering and larceny after breaking and entering in Scotland County, and in 2011 of larceny of a motor vehicle in Richmond County. He served fewer than four years on those convictions.