A man with a felony history has been charged with starting a fire at a home in downtown Mooresville.

On Tuesday, Buddy Allen Yates, 31, was charged with first-degree arson and two counts of probation violation. He received a $1,010,000 secured bond.  

Mooresville police and fire departments responded to an address on North Church St. around 4 a.m. Tuesday, said Mooresville Police Department Major Ron Chilton.

Fire Marshal Geoff Woolard said the fire was limited to some contents in a room and did not extend to the structure. He added the fire was extinguished before the fire department.

One person was occupying the home and was not injured, Chilton said. After finding evidence indicating the fire was intentionally set, Yates was named a possible suspect by the occupant because of previous incidents involving domestic violence, Chilton said. Yates was currently on probation due to the altercations.

Chilton said further investigation located evidence placing Yates at the scene of the fire moments before the fire was discovered. He was located and arrested in Mooresville around 9:45 a.m. and charged with arson. Chilton added evidence from the case prompted the revocation of Yates’ probation by the North Carolina Department of Public Safety.

There is conflicting information concerning Yates' address. Jail records said that he has an address at the location of the incident; Chilton said Yates resides in Statesville.

State records show that he has a criminal history involving breaking and entering, stalking, obtaining property by false pretenses, drug trafficking and statutory rape of a minor.

Yates is scheduled to appear in court Sept. 24. 

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