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Bates arrested on Arson charge


July 25th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office reports a Walnut woman was arrested today (Wednesday) on a State Fire Marshal’s warrant for Arson 2nd Degree, an Atlantic Police Department warrant for Conspiracy, a District Court warrant for Failure to Appear, and a Sheriff’s Office warrant for Driving Under Suspension.

Katrina Sue Bates (booking photo courtesy Cass Co. Sheriff's Office)

 45-year old Katrina Sue Bates was brought to the Cass County Jail, where she was being held without bond, on the Conspiracy charge. The charge was brought in association with the August 6th, 2010 fire at the former Wyman’s Building on West 7th Street in Atlantic. The owner of the building, 49-year old Jerry Jay Wyman plead guilty in December 2010, to Conspiracy and Insurance Fraud charges. A charge of 2nd Degree arson was dismissed in exchange for his plea. Wyman received a 5-year suspended sentence. He was instead placed on two-years supervised release, and ordered to reside in a Residential Corrections Facility. In May 2011, Wyman was released from the RCF on supervised probation, until December 2012.  The building was recently torn down.

Cass County Attorney Dan Feistner told KJAN News Katrina Sue Bates (formerly known as Katrina Forde) was arrested by authorities in Pottawattamie County on or about May 1st in Louisiana, pursuant to a Federal warrant. She was extradited back to Pott. County and held on felony burglary charges. In May, she entered a written plea of not guilty to those charges. On Tuesday (July 24th), the case against her was dismissed according to Feistner “In the interest of justice.” Additional charges are still pending against her, in Cass and Audubon Counties. 

Her husband, 47-year old Douglas Dean Bates, plead guilty in Jan. 2011, to a charge of Arson in the 2nd Degree. He received a 10-year suspended sentence, and two-years of supervised probation, in addition to credit for time served. Last week (July 18th), he was sentenced to 15-years in prison, for Conspiring to Distribute Methamphetamine in and around Cass County.  Douglas Bates was also ordered to serve a five year term of supervised release following incarceration. On February 21st, 2012, he plead guilty to conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance – methamphetamine. The conviction was the result of a three year investigation into methamphetamine trafficking in and around Atlantic.