Hancock Arson Suspect Competent to Stand Trial

The man accused of killing 4 people last summer by setting his apartment building in Hancock on fire is competent to stand trial.

That’s the ruling from Houghton County Circuit Court for 47-year-old Ronald Kemppainen, now of Calumet.

The fire at 116 Quincy Street on July 25th started in the laundry room and destroyed the building.

Kemppainen’s trial was originally scheduled to start today.

But last month, the defense asked to have a competency hearing first.

His trial is now scheduled for May 24th, and it’s expected to last a week.

If Kemppainen is convicted, he could face life in prison without parole for each of the murder counts and 20 years on the arson charge.

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