Following the investigation into a fire at a rural Oelwein residence in January, arson charges have now been filed against a Winthrop man.


The fire was reported to authorities on January 21st, at a home just east of Oelwein on 35th Street. The residence was being remodeled at the time.

Just before the blaze was discovered, a co-owner of the residence spotted a vehicle leaving the area of where the fire was reported.

After a month-long investigation, 19 year old Hayes Kern was charged with Burglary-3rd Degree, and Arson-1st Degree. A warrant was issued for Kern in the amount of $50,000.

He was being held in the Buchanan County jail in Independence, on charges of Theft-2nd Degree, and Unauthorized Use of a Credit Card. After Buchanan County completes court proceedings, Kern will then be transferred to the Fayette County jail in West Union to face the arson and burglary charges.

The Oelwein Fire Department assisted the Fayette County Sheriff in the investigation.