Ex-con suspected in Sunnyside vehicle arsons

A Zillah man convicted for his role in instigating a fatal fight between his son and a fellow Granger High School student 23 years ago is in jail while authorities explore his possible connection to two arsons.

Glenn Alan Langford is being held on $50,000 bail in the Yakima County jail on a weapons possession charge while detectives investigate whether he set fire to two cars.

Langford served 13 years in prison for his role in a high-profile 1990 stabbing at Granger High School. A jury convicted Langford, then 39, of being an accomplice to second-degree murder for egging on his son, Glenn Langford Jr., into a grudge fight with fellow student Carson Simmons in front of hundreds of witnesses in the high school parking lot.

The son pleaded guilty to fatally stabbing Simmons during that fight and was sentenced to eight years in prison.

Langford Sr. was released in 2003.

In April and May this year, Sunnyside Fire Marshal Bill Harris began investigating Langford for the arson of two vehicles, both owned by a 32-year-old woman who has an anti-harassment order against Langford, according to a search warrant filed in Yakima County District Court.

According to the search warrant, Langford told another man he started an April 8 fire in the 2300 block of Phipps Road about five miles north of Sunnyside that destroyed a van owned by the woman. Langford instructed the man to ask the woman, “If the van was worth the restraining order?” the warrant said.

On May 10, a witness told investigators he saw Langford on the adjacent property to a fire in the 100 block of Yakima Valley Highway in Sunnyside that destroyed a Chevrolet Chevelle owned by the same woman, the warrant said.

Harris and a Sunnyside police officer showed up with a search warrant for Langford’s Zillah house in the 1500 block of North Granger Avenue, where they found under his mattress a loaded Glock 9 mm pistol belonging to his grandson, according to a probable cause affidavit in Yakima County Superior Court.

Langford is prohibited from having guns because of his previous conviction. The maximum penalty is 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine.

He was booked into Yakima County jail on May 28.

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