Benton man pleads guilty to arson charge

Sarah Perry
Staff Writer

A Benton man recently received a sentence of 10 years’ probation for setting a house on fire earlier this year.

Joseph Ioup, 45, pleaded guilty to an arson charge in connection with the incident. The charge was entered in Saline County Circuit Court.

According to a Saline County Sheriff’s Office report, shortly after 7 p.m. on Feb. 22, deputies were notified that a wanted man was possibly inside a home in the 4800 block of Arkansas 5.

When deputies arrived, Ioup, who was named in an active warrant for failure to appear, refused to open the door and began cursing, said Jeff Silk, spokesperson for the Saline County Sheriff’s Office.

For more than 40 minutes, the patrol division sergeant attempted to speak with Ioup, but he allegedly refused to exit the home and began throwing items through the window toward deputies.

At one point during the incident, Ioup allegedly threatened to burn the house down, Silk said.

Following the threat, a fire department was notified, they observed smoke and flames. When the dwelling was fully engulfed in flames, the Crows Station and Salem Fire Department firefighters stepped in to extinguish the blaze.

Ioup dropped a dog out of the rear window of the home and then exited the home through the window. He was treated for minor injuries at the scene and transported to Saline Memorial Hospital. After being released from the hospital, he was
transported to the Saline County Detention Center.

Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Carrie Robertson represented the state during the case. Toney Brasuell served as legal counsel for Ioup.