Photo courtesy WSAZ-TV

Charleston detectives are trying to piece together what made Steven Clay ram this house with his SUV sparking a fire Tuesday night.


CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A house and two vehicles are burned out and the suspect faces an array of charges after a wild incident on Charleston’s South Ruffner Road Tuesday night.

Police say Steven Clay, 39, of Yawkey, showed up at the home at about 8 p.m., entered the home and started assaulting several people in the house.

“The people inside fled out the back door,” said Charleston Police Sergeant Tony Hazelett. “Clay then returned to his vehicle, got in with a passenger, and started ramming the side of the house.”

Police say Clay rammed the house repeatedly until his SUV caught fire.

“Once it caught fire, he exited his vehicle and left his vehicle in the house, which caught the house on fire,” said Hazelett.

The fire also spread to another vehicle nearby.

Clay and the passenger left the scene but were caught by police a short time later.  Clay remains hospitalized but is expected to be released soon. He’ll face felony destruction of property and burglary charges upon his release.  The passenger, whose name hasn’t been released, is in intensive care at Charleston Area Medical Center from injuries suffered while the vehicle rammed the house.

Hazelett said they are still trying to sort out exactly what caused the incident.

“We’re learning it may be over some money or some property,” he said. “According to Clay the people inside the house may have owed him some money and/or property.”

Nobody inside the home was hurt in the incident. Police say Clay will likely face additional charges after they sort through witness statements and the passenger may also face charges.

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  • Jephre

    Remember the good old days when debt collectors just made harassing phone calls?