Man Pleads Guilty to Charge Stemming from Hitching Post Fire

Associated Press

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — A New Jersey man has pleaded guilty to a charge stemming from a 2010 arson fire that destroyed the landmark Hitching Post Inn in Cheyenne.

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle reported Wednesday that Falgun Dharia pleaded guilty to conspiring to commit insurance fraud. His case was transferred to the U.S. District Court of Eastern New York in July after he and federal prosecutors reached a plea agreement.

Dharia was a principal in CJM Hospitality LLC, which had bought the Hitching Post at a bankruptcy proceeding. Prosecutors say the Sept. 15, 2010, arson was set to defraud an insurance company of $13 million.

The Hitching Post had long been an important gathering spot in Cheyenne and served as a temporary home for many state lawmakers during their winter legislative sessions.