Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom announced that Michael Duane Damron (a/k/a Wade Duane Arvidson), age 53, of Prior Lake, was sentenced last Friday to 84 months in prison by Judge Jerome Abrams in connection with a fire that significantly damaged the Historic Eagan City Hall on September 8, 2013. Damron pled guilty on October 14th to one count of Arson in the First Degree (a felony). Restitution was ordered in the amount of $286,395.62 to the City of Eagan and $21,895 to Eagan Fire in connection with the Arson. Damron also pled guilty to one count of Burglary involving a case from October of 2013 and was sentenced to 30 months in prison which will be served concurrently. Restitution in the amount of $158,658.59 was also ordered to be paid to the victim in this case.
Damron’s brother and co-defendant Wynn Donald Arvidson, age 51, also of Prior Lake, pled guilty to one count of Arson in the First Degree (a Felony). Judge Karen Asphaug set the sentencing for January 12, 2017 at 1:30 p.m. in Hastings. Bail and conditions remain in the amount of $200,000 without conditions ($150,000 with conditions).
The allegations contained in the criminal complaint reflect that Damron had been upset for a number of years with Eagan officials stemming from a prior criminal investigation in 2006 that involved multiple thefts in the cities of Eagan, Inver Grove Heights, Shakopee, Savage, Burnsville, Lakeville, Elko, Prior Lake and Le Sueur County. The Damron/Arvidson family had unsuccessfully sued the cities of Eagan and Inver Grove Heights for $12 million dollars because they felt the police had taken items belonging to them in the course of this 2006 criminal investigation. Damron also has a previous history of writing threatening letters to various officials and vandalism against entities he is upset with.
Additional facts pertaining to this case can be found in the criminal complaints which are located online at: Criminal Complaint Search. While in custody, mug shots can be viewed at: Inmate Search.
Backstrom commented: "We are pleased to hold these defendants accountable for this premeditated crime of violence that caused significant damage to Eagan’s Historic City Hall."
Backstrom praised Assistant County Attorney Jennifer Bovitz, who prosecuted this case. Backstrom also thanked the Eagan Police and Fire Departments for their hard work on this case.
If you have questions, contact James Backstrom at 651-438-4440.