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Man faces federal charges in fire caused by pot extract

A Medford man faces new federal charges for his alleged role in a January west Medford garage fire.

Troy Allen Wyatt, 43, faces new felony charges of manufacturing hash oil and endangering human life while manufacturing a controlled substance, according to documents filed Sept. 1 in U.S. District Court in Medford. He's scheduled to make his initial court appearance Sept. 19. 

An explosion and fire occurred Jan. 2 in an unattached garage at Wyatt's home at 32 Hamilton St. Because of the garage's close proximity to Medford Fire Station No. 2, crews were able to extinguish the fire before it spread to the home. Wyatt reportedly suffered burns to his hands.

Investigators determined the explosion was caused by gases sparked during the manufacturing of hash oil, according to police reports.

Wyatt allegedly attempted to hide 2.7 pounds of marijuana from investigators inside the residence, according to documents filed in Wyatt's case in Jackson County Circuit Court. Wyatt's girlfriend, Tanya Fitzhugh, is a co-defendant in the state case.

Fitzhugh pleaded guilty Aug. 1 to a misdemeanor charge of tampering with physical evidence, admitting she took the pounds of marijuana to a neighbor's house in an attempt to hide it from investigators before the neighbor refused. She was sentenced to 11 months of bench probation and ordered to pay restitution totaling $11,799 to property owner John Ziegler and Safeco Insurance.

Wyatt previously entered not-guilty pleas on state felony charges of first-degree child neglect and unlawful manufacture of marijuana, misdemeanor charges of unlawful production of a homemade cannabinoid extract, reckless burning, recklessly endangering another person and endangering the welfare of a minor.

A motion filed in July by the Jackson County District Attorney's Office mentions the possibility Wyatt's state case could be dismissed in favor of the federal case, but Circuit Court records currently show a trial date of Nov. 29. 

Reach reporter Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or nmorgan@mailtribune.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MTCrimeBeat.

A Medford firefighter looks into a burning garage that caught fire Jan. 2 at the corner of Hamilton and Eighth streets. Mail Tribune/ Denise Baratta
Troy Allen Wyatt