VT man faces trial next year in case of body found after fire

ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. (AP) — The trial of a man accused of killing a man whose body was found following a Vermont house fire is scheduled for April 2019.

The Caledonian Record reports attorneys in the case of Allen Draper have agreed to the trial date.

The 20-year-old Draper is accused of killing St. Johnsbury resident Tim Persons on May 15. Police say he went to Persons’ home and struck his head with a radiator pipe, then set the home on fire after Persons refused Draper’s demand for money to buy cocaine.

Authorities said soot was found in Persons’ trachea, indicating that he was still alive and breathing at the time of the fire.

Draper has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder, arson, and other charges.

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