UPDATED: John Edward Cropper Convicted in 2021 Harbor Road Arson Fire in West OC
UPDATED – 09/15/22 – A Worcester County jury has found John Edward Cropper guilty of arson. The arson fire occurred on June 22, 2021 on Harbor Road in West Ocean City and destroyed a home, a boathouse and damaged three other home. Two firefighters were also hospitalized. Cropper lived on Stephen Decatur Highway at the time of the fire. He will have a pre-trial sentencing investigation and psychological evaluation before it is determined the amount of time he will spend in prison.
UPDATED – 12/18/21 – 3:45pm – An arrest has been made in an arson fire that destroyed and damaged several buildings at the Ocean City Harbor last summer. The Worcester County Fire Marshal arrested 56 year old John Edward Cropper on Friday in Snow Hill. At the time of the fire – Cropper lived on Stephen Decatur Highway. He is charged with 4 counts of 1st degree arson, a count of 2nd degree arson, and malicious burning – he’s being held without bail pending a bond review hearing next week.
UPDATED – 7/6/21 – 3:45pm – A fire that destroyed an unoccupied home and boat house and damaged three other homes has been ruled arson by the Worcester County Fire marshal. The fire broke out just before 2am on June 22 on Harbor Road in West Ocean City. The County Fire Marshal’s office has been assisted by the Ocean City Fire Marshal[‘s Office and a Maryland State Fire Marshal K-9 accelerant unit. The Worcester County Bureau of Investigating is assisting with the on-going investigation. Anyone with information on the arson fire should contact the Worcester County Fire Marshal’s Office at 410-632-5666 or the Maryland Fire and Arson hotline at 1-800-492-7529
UPDATED 2pm – The Worcester County Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating a fire in a single family home located at 12849 Harbor Road in West Ocean City, Maryland that occurred just before 2am Tuesday. The fire also damaged three adjacent single family homes. The home where the fire began was unoccupied at the time of the fire. Arriving fire units reported a single family home and an adjacent out-building on fire. Volunteer Fire Companies from Berlin, Ocean City and Ocean Pines responded.
Two firefighters were injured during the fire. One was flown to Tidal Health for burn injuries to his legs. The other firefighter sustained injuries from a fall. Fire units remained on the scene for over 5 hours.
The County Fire Marshal’s office was assisted by the Ocean City Fire Marshal’s Office and a Maryland State Fire Marshal K9 accelerant unit. The investigation is on-going and no cause has been determined as of this release.
Anyone with any information is asked to call the Worcester County Fire Marshal’s Office at 410-632-5666 or the Maryland Fire and Arson hotline at 1-800-492-7528.
An overnight fire in West Ocean City has injured two firefighters.
The Ocean City Fire Department said firefighters responded to the 12,000-block of South Harbor Road shortly before 2:00 a.m. where a single-story house with a large attached garage was burning. Firefighters worked to put out the fire and to protect additional structures.
One firefighter has been flown to the local trauma center with burns and smoke inhalation. The other was taken to Atlantic General Hospital for treatment of a shoulder injury. Their injuries are not considered to be life-threatening.
The Worcester County Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating for the cause of the fire.