MAYVILLE – The man accused of setting a fire that destroyed the historic Mayville Diner appeared in court Friday.
Michael Ellis, 40, who owned the nearly 70-year-old diner, was charged with third-degree arson, a class C felony, following the December fire.
This was Ellis’ first court appearance since he was charged. Ellis waved his right to a preliminary hearing on the case. The case will now move to Chautauqua County Court.
Several Mayville residents were in the courtroom showing their support for the small-town establishment.
The Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office says a deputy on patrol first spotted smoke coming from the diner on Monday, December 9, just before 11 p.m.
Several area fire departments battled the blaze into the overnight hours. The diner was a total loss and demolished.