Deputy's Wife Tries to Kill Him, Children in House Fire
February 09, 2011
GADSDEN, AL – The wife of an Etowah County sheriff’s deputy has been charged with attempted murder and arson after she allegedly set fire to the home she shared with her husband and two children, Sheriff Todd Entrekin said.
Danielle Joslyn Raley, 26, is charged with first-degree arson and three counts of attempted murder, investigator Jeremy Walker said.
A cash bond of $200,000 has been set.
Raley is accused of setting a fire on Jan. 31 at the family’s home on Croft Ferry Road in the Ball Play community.
The fire began inside the house when a set of curtains were lit with matches. One wall and the curtains were damaged.
Raley’s husband and two children were in the house at the time of the fire.
According to a report filed at the sheriff’s office about the fire, Jason Raley was asleep on the couch between 3 a.m. and 3:30 a.m. and awoke to the smell of smoke.
He jumped up and got his wife and kids out of the house and threw water on the fire to extinguish it, according to the report.
Danielle Raley was arrested on Monday after she confessed to investigators she set the fire.
“It’s a tragic situation that a mother would even think to do something to harm her family,” Entrekin said. “It doesn’t matter if it was a deputy sheriff’s wife. We’re going to treat this case like we would any other.”
Entrekin said that is one of the reasons the Etowah County Arson Task Force, which consists of several different fire and law enforcement agencies, was involved with the Etowah County Sheriff’s Office in the investigation.
“We wanted to make sure this was looked at with outside eyes,” Entrekin said.
Deputy State Fire Marshal Ray Cumby works with the Arson Task Force.
“We are pleased that this case was solved quickly and without injury to anyone,” Cumby said. “The cooperation between agencies involved in the Arson Task Force has proven beneficial to everyone. We will continue to prosecute anyone who is involved in setting fires and putting other lives at risk.”
A fire in 2009 that destroyed the Raleys’ home in Southside was ruled accidental after an investigation by the Arson Task Force, Entrekin said.
“If there is any information that comes up in the current investigation that warrants (it), an investigation could be reopened in the 2009 fire,” he said.