McSherrystown woman accused of setting fire to house in Hanover

Jill Yohe

HANOVER, YORK COUNTY, Pa.–A McSherrystown woman who is accused of setting fire to a home in Hanover last month told family members she had an “intuition” to remove valuable items and keepsakes.

Jill Ann Yohe, 47, is charged with three counts of arson.

Fire crews responded to a fire at a home along the 700 block of Broadway in Hanover on May 5. Hanover Borough Police said fire investigators discovered four separate fires had been intentionally set on the first-floor and basement of the home, which was owned by Yohe’s husband and his ex-wife.

Two fires started on blankets and tested positive for the presence of gasoline, a known fire accelerant, according to the criminal complaint. Investigators say a Steelers blanket was rolled up and shoved into the rafters of the basement ceiling, and a green blanket was laid on a wooded pallet leaning against the hot water heater, according to court records.

The main fire was discovered in the living room, where Yohe’s husband had just hung a taxidermy mount o fa bear he had harvested during a recent hunting trip. Police said the fires were set in rooms that contained much of Yohe’s husbands hunting gear and guns.

During the investigation, Yohe told her soon to be daughter-in-law that she had an “intuition” to keep some items in her car and not in the house, including a bridesmaid dress she was going to wear in an upcoming wedding, bridal shower gifts and photos of her son, according to the criminal complaint.

Yohe had been the last person to leave the home, less than an hour before the fire was called into 911, according to court documents. ¬†Authorities also found inconsistencies with Yohe’s statements to fire investigators relating to when she left the home.

Yohe initially told police she had laid blankets out to dry after they got wet from their sump pump failing, according to court documents. But her husband denied having any water issues lately, according to the criminal complaint.

Investigators discovered that the fact the home was still owned by Yohe’s husband and his ex-wife was a “sore topic” with her, police said.

Police also found out that Yohe was planning on remodeling the home, but was unable to do so because of financial issues, according to court records.

Yohe’s formal arraignment is scheduled for June 23.