Daniel Flint, accused of Bedford Middle School arson, waives preliminary hearing

Lynchburg & Central Virginia News

NOTE: This story has been updated to reflect the correct maximum sentence of the charges against Flint.

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) — The man accused of setting fire to the old Bedford Middle School had a preliminary hearing scheduled on Monday in Bedford General District Court. Daniel Flint is charged with arson and burglary. Together, they carry a maximum sentence of 30 years.

Preliminary hearings are where the prosecutor has to show there is enough evidence to charge the defendant. On Monday, March 8, Flint instead chose to waive his right to a preliminary hearing.

His attorney declined to comment afterwards.

WFXR News spoke with Commonwealth’s Attorney Wes Nance, who explained what happens next.

“It’ll go directly to the grand jury without the Commonwealth having to present evidence,” said Nance. “In exchange for that, we amended one of the two charges. Mr. Flint was always charged with one count of arson and one count of burglary.”

The burglary charge was changed to a slightly different version under the burglary statute. Both versions are felonies, and if he’s found guilty, they both have a maximum sentence of 20 years.

The difference is the old charge has a minimum sentence of five years. The new one is a lesser charge and can come with up to 12 months in jail or 1-20 years in prison.

From here, an investigator will present evidence before a grand jury. That will be on April 2. Nance said a trial date will be set that afternoon.

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