House fire on Hixson Pike ruled as arson, Suspect Arrested

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Reported by: Erik Avanier
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Updated: 7/01 7:09 pm
HIXSON, Tennessee(WDEF) - A man who was taken to the hospital after his house caught on fire has now been arrested and charged with arson.

Walter Marks, 54, of Hixson reportedly confessed to investigators that he purposely set his home on fire.

It happened on the morning of June 17.

Firefighters were called to a home on the 5400 block of Hixson Pike where a fire erupted in a back bedroom.

When crews arrived, they found Marks sitting inside a pickup truck in the driveway. He was unresponsive and immediately taken to the hospital.

While at the hospital, Marks reportedly told investigators that he "wanted to come clean" about how the fire started. According to the arrest affidavit, Marks told investigators that he was bipolar and that he wanted to kill himself by setting the room on fire.

Marks also told authorities that he took a large sum of pills then went outside to sit in his truck.  He told officers he didn't drive away because he was too drowsy from the pills he took.

Later during the interrogation, Marks admitted to police that he was having marriage problems  and was depressed and wanted to burn down the house he rents before committing suicide.

He is now being held on $50,000 bond and is due in court July15.

Marks is no stranger to trouble, he has a lengthy criminal conviction record related to substance abuse.

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