A man recently released from prison is charged with murder after he allegedly set a mobile home on fire late at night in east-central Minnesota, killing the occupant inside.
Robert S. Raisch Jr., 49, was charged Monday with second-degree murder, first-degree arson and first-degree assault in the death of James M. Shepardson, 59, the owner of the Finlayson home, where Raisch had also been staying.
Shepardson died from burns suffered in the fire and a blow to the head, according to the Midwest medical examiner's office.
The fully engulfed home, set on a wooded piece of property just west of Interstate 35, was discovered shortly before midnight on March 7 along Hammond Road just south of Howard Road.
The criminal complaint alleges that Raisch and another man stole a television and speakers from the home, and Raisch beat up Shepardson and set the home ablaze.
Raisch remains jailed on the charges and for a probation violation and giving law enforcement a false name.
His criminal history in Minnesota includes convictions for first-degree robbery, car theft, aggravated robbery and burglary. Raisch has also gone by the name Jackson Ignatius Ironhorse.
Raisch had been released from prison on Dec. 31 on court-ordered supervised release in connection with the robbery.