A Pana resident has been charged with Aggravated Arson and Domestic Battery after allegedly assaulting a women with a knife and setting her house on fire. 55-year-old Brian Ferguson was arrested after being flown to St. John’s Hospital in Springfield for an apparent self-inflicted knife wound to the throat.
The Pana Police Department reported that they were called to a residence at 8 Highpoint Drive, Lake Pana Sunday evening by a 61-year-old female who alleged that Ferguson had entered her residence and began to cut his own throat in front of her. He also attacked her, but she was able to escape with only minor injuries. As she was fleeing to neighbor’s residence on foot, she reported seeing Ferguson dump gasoline around the base of her home and set it ablaze.
By the time police arrived on the scene, the residence was fully engulfed in flames. Ferguson had fled on foot and was spotted by another Police Officer responding. He made slashing motions across his neck and warned the officer to stay back and retreated to his own residence. Around this time, the Pana Fire Department arrived to combat the fire.
Due to the nature of Ferguson’s threats, additional agencies were brought in to assist and a perimeter was formed his home. Those agencies included the Christian County Sheriff’s Office, Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, Christian County States Attorney’s Office, and Illinois State Police District 9, ISP SWAT, ISP Crisis Negotiation Team, and ISP Air Operations. No answer was received after multiple attempts to contact Ferguson in his home and police entered the residence to find him lying on the floor with serious knife wounds to the throat. He was flown to St. John’s Hospital in Springfield where he remains in protective custody. The incident is currently under investigation.