Lighthouse arson arrest: Authorities say owner confessed to crime

By Sheila A. Marshall

Staff Writer

After an investigation lasting nearly four weeks, authorities say the arrest of 37-year-old Steven Brehaut, owner of the Lighthouse Restaurant, followed a Monday interview with authorities during which he was said to have confessed to deliberately setting the fire that destroyed the popular local business.

“The suspect (Brehaut) did confess to the crime,” said Glenn Allen, spokesman for Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens. “The confession was made Monday.”

He said the confession was made to investigators of the State Fire Marshal’s Office, who had been working the case in conjunction with personnel of the Lamar County’s Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division.

Allen had previously stated that evidence discovered at the scene led to the determination that the fire was intentionally set.

The Lighthouse, for decades a Milner landmark, was completely destroyed in the July 10 blaze. Allen said the loss was valued at $1.2 million.

As of Tuesday evening, Allen reported state investigators had not yet announced a motive for the alleged arson.

However, he had earlier stated that if Brehaut had attempted to file an insurance claim in the incident, additional charges may be sought.

Brehaut is currently facing one count of first degree arson.

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