A Myrtle Beach man was sentenced on Nov. 13 to 10 years in prison in connection with three fires at Ocean Boulevard motels and at City Hall, according to authorities.
Phillip Michael Thomas Homan, 23, pleaded guilty to three counts of third-degree arson before Circuit Court Judge Larry Hyman, who sentenced him to 10 years in prison on each charge.
The sentences will run concurrently, according to the Horry County Public Index. Homan also was ordered to pay court costs.
Last year, Myrtle Beach police charged Homan after a Dec. 3 fire at Myrtle Beach City Hall that caused damage to the side of the building. Witnesses told police they saw two people running away from the building after a loud explosion.
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A police report said officers learned that two employees from nearby Fresh Brewed Coffee House reported the fire about 11 p.m. Dec. 3 and extinguished it. A window screen was damaged, but the windows were not broken.
That same day at 7 p.m., firefighters were called to the Sportsman Motor Inn at 1405 S. Ocean Blvd., for a blaze, according to a separate report. Fire crews extinguished the blaze inside a room of the vacant motel and said it appeared the door had been forced open.
Police charged Homan in that fire and two others at the Holiday South motel at 2605 S. Ocean Blvd., according to police reports. Those fires occurred at 7:45 p.m. Nov. 16, 2013, and 1 p.m. Nov. 22, 2013.
In the first of those blazes, police learned witnesses reported seeing two people near the motel before the fire, according to the report. In the second blaze, officers learned that the fire was started in three different rooms on the third floor.
Damage was estimated at $100,000 from those fires, according to the report.
In an unrelated incident that was reported on July 19, 2010, Homan was identified by a then 12-year-old in connection with a sexual assault, according to that report. A 10-year-old girl at that time also told police that Homan had kissed her.
That charge was dismissed in exchange for Homan’s guilty plea in the fires, according to Horry County records.
A records check with the State Law Enforcement Division showed that Homan had been arrested previously and convicted of shoplifting in 2008, 2010 and 2011 in Myrtle Beach. In those incidents he was sentenced to one year of probation and he served six months in jail.
In 2011, Homan was charged in Myrtle Beach with breaking into a automobile and sentenced to a year in prison, according to records. In 2012, Myrtle Beach police charged Homan with petty larceny, contributing to the delinquency of a minor and possession of burglary tools.
Records showed he was convicted of those charges in July 2012 and given a sentence of time served since his arrest in June.