Bremen man charged in arson, burglaries, assault of law enforcement officers


Undated booking photo of Matthew Eli Aaron (Cullman County Sheriff’s Office)

PROSPECT/MT. JOY – A Bremen man has been charged with multiple offenses stemming from an event Friday night in the Prospect/Mt. Joy area in which he allegedly set fire to two homes, burglarized properties and assaulted multiple law enforcement officers.

According to a statement from the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO), Matthew Eli Aaron, 36, has been charged with second-degree arson, two counts of second-degree assault, third-degree burglary and resisting arrest. The CCSO said there will be additional charges added.

Authorities received a call from a local fire department that a field was on fire at the intersection of County Road 8 and County Road 35 Friday evening. When firefighters responded, a man, later identified as Aaron, refused to allow them to extinguish the fire. Aaron also allegedly threatened several firefighters. The CCSO said Aaron left the field by the time deputies arrived. He allegedly threatened several residents who came to assist the firefighters.

A search for Aaron ensued, upon which CCSO deputies discovered that he allegedly burglarized and broke into several homes in the area of County Road 8 and County Road 35.

“As deputies were speaking with one homeowner that just had their home damaged by Mr. Aaron, they noticed fire and smoke coming from another residence nearby,” said the statement from the CCSO. “Deputies quickly arrived and saw the house was indeed on fire. Deputies then made entry into the home to make sure no one (was) inside the residence.”

Deputies located Aaron as they made their way to the back side of the residence, said the CCSO, which said Aaron was inside a screened-in porch.  

“After quickly coming into contact with the deputies, Mr. Aaron discarded the firearm he had in his possession and he did not follow any other lawful orders and began to assault the deputies and investigators,” said the statement. “After several minutes of resisting arrest and assaulting the deputies, Mr. Aaron was handcuffed and placed in the back of a patrol car and transported to the Cullman County Detention Center (CCDC).”

Aaron allegedly resisted law enforcement further upon arrival at the detention center, where he allegedly attempted to assault CCSO deputies, detention deputies and Cullman Police officers.

“I am very thankful for the deputies (and) detention deputies, as well as the CPD officers and many firefighters who assisted in the arrest of this suspect and also help(ed) get him detained once he arrived here at the detention center. I have also spoken to District Attorney Wilson Blaylock about this incident, and his office and the sheriff’s office will do everything we can for the victims and citizens in the Prospect/Mt. Joy area,” said Sheriff Matt Gentry.  “I’m proud of the relentless effort by our deputies and assistance from community members in Mr. Aaron’s apprehension.”

Aaron is currently being treated at Cullman Regional for drug-related issues and smoke inhalation. He is being held without bond. Charges are pending in other jurisdictions relating to these cases.

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