2nd suspect charged in Harding Inn arson; more arrests possible - WSMV Channel 4

2nd suspect charged in Harding Inn arson; more arrests possible

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Joshua Brooks (Source: Metro Nashville PD) Joshua Brooks (Source: Metro Nashville PD)
The abandoned hotel went up in flames on July 7. The abandoned hotel went up in flames on July 7.
NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

A second suspect has been arrested in connection to the fire that destroyed the Harding Inn last week, and police say more arrests could be coming. 

The building was supposed to be vacant, but fire officials said multiple people were living there.

Joshua Brooks, 27, was reportedly identified by victims of the fire and was arrested on Tuesday afternoon.

During his interview with police, he admitted that he was there when the fire was set on July 7. Brooks, Antoine Clark and a third person then went across the street to watch the blaze, according to the fire department.

According to the affidavit, Brooks said he knew that people were inside the building. He is charged with aggravated arson.

Clark, 29, was arrested on Thursday and is also charged with aggravated arson. Investigators said Clark threatened to kill a resident of the Harding Inn over some personal belongings. Clark and another person then allegedly stacked mattresses outside room 456 and set it on fire.

The fire trapped six people inside the room, including a pregnant woman. All six were rescued from the balcony by firefighters. The victims said they saw Clark run from the building, saying he hoped they all burned to death.

The pregnant woman and another man were transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. 

The Harding Inn was shut down five years ago but has become a home to squatters. From 2009 to 2010, officers responded to about 300 separate calls for everything from drugs to prostitution.

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