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Woman accused of ramming, setting fire to mother’s barn, assaulting deputy, was out on bond for assault

GARVIN COUNTY, Okla. - The investigation into a barn fire near Lindsay now includes ongoing investigations in Oklahoma County.

Kelsey Swinford faces charges for third degree arson, malicious injury to property and assault and battery on a police officer, after a bizarre series of events in rural Garvin County.

A Garvin county deputy spotted flames at a property on County Road 3070 around 1 a.m. Wednesday. At about the same time, the 911 center received a call from 41-year-old Kelsey Swinford about a hay barn fire at the same location.

"What was so unusual about this, the caller that made the 911 call was the same person that the deputy found on scene," explained Sheriff Larry Rhodes.

The deputy on scene discovered Swinford ramming a 2019 Dodge pickup truck into the burning barn. Sheriff Rhodes says the deputy tracked down the owner of the property, who turned out to be Swinford's mother.

"Allegations were made that Swinford might have been responsible for setting the barn on fire," said the sheriff.

Deputies say Swinford pushed and tried to strike the responding deputy. Then, after attempting to run, head butted and kicked the deputy in the face.

Sheriff Rhodes says initial reports show deputies noticed Swinford's clothing smelled like gasoline. A search warrant of the truck she was driving yielded a gas can and cigarette lighter.

Officials say the fire destroyed $90,000 worth of alfalfa hay being stored in Swinford's mother's barn.

"The deputy learned there was dispute between the mother and Swinford, as well as the owner of the hay within the barn," said Sheriff Rhodes. "This dispute was over the use of the 600 or so acres of farmland there where the barn was sitting."

Swinford was jailed in Garvin County on a $50,000 bond. But at the time of the fire, she was already out on bond in Oklahoma County for a domestic assault, according to Rhodes.

"Then yesterday afternoon, I do know our investigators have been in contact with Bethany Police over a possible link to two first degree arsons in the Oklahoma city area possibly linked to Swinford," said the sheriff.

The deputy was not hurt in this incident. Fire Marshals also combed through the scene and believe the fire was intentionally set.

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