Federal arson charge for suspects in Pal’s Shanty fire

Marcus Allen Tyler (left) and Michael James Duncan (right) shown in jail booking photos.
Marcus Allen Tyler (left) and Michael James Duncan (right) shown in jail booking photos.

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN 6) — A federal grand jury this week issued a single count indictment against two individuals for the November 2013 fire at Pal’s Shanty Tavern.

The indictment, filed Wednesday, claims that on Nov. 15, 2013, Marcus Allen Tyler and Michael James Duncan “knowingly and maliciously” damaged and destroyed property that was used in interstate commerce.

Tyler was burned in the early morning, second alarm fire at 4630 Northeast Sandy Boulevard.

Officials said arson investigators believe the two men set the fire on purpose to cover up a burglary, and that one of the men was once employed at the tavern.

The fire caused extensive damage to the building. Aside from Tyler’s injury, there were no other injuries reported as a result of the fire, police said.

Firefighters on scene of the Pal's Shanty Fire in Nov. 2013 (KOIN)
Firefighters on scene of the Pal’s Shanty Fire in Nov. 2013 (KOIN)

Federal court documents that may potentially explain more about the case, and that may list any future court dates in United States District Court remain sealed, officials said.

Officials confirmed neither Tyler nor Duncan have appeared in federal court for their arraignment.

According to Multnomah County Circuit Court records, the state case against Tyler remains open, and is pending trial. He was arraigned Dec. 24 on a grand jury indictment charging him with second-degree burglary, second-degree arson and first-degree criminal mischief.

Court records for Duncan state that his case also remains open, pending trial. He was arraigned Jan. 7, 2014 on a grand jury indictment that charged with the same three counts of Tyler. Both men have pleaded not guilty to their respective case in Multnomah County.

Court records in Multnomah County indicate a court hearing next week.

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