A 44-year-old man in Florida was taken into custody when the bathroom of a convenience store caught on fire while he smoked drugs during the early morning hours of Sept. 15. He faces criminal charges of arson, resisting arrest, possession of drug paraphernalia and carrying a concealed weapon. Bond was set at $1,500.
A store employee reported that he was serving customers when he observed a man enter the store to use the bathroom. He knew the subject from prior contacts and later identified him. As he began performing other duties on the premises, he realized the man had been in the restroom for a few minutes and went to check on him. He could smell a burning odor and knocked on the door. The man opened up the bathroom, and smoke began pouring out of it. The employee says that the subject had a metal tire pressure gauge in his hand.
The garbage can and towel dispenser were burning in the restroom. The employee went to get a fire extinguisher to put out the fire. The subject allegedly took an alcoholic beverage out of the cooler and left the store.
Law enforcement personnel knew the subject because of past dealings with him and located him later. When he saw the authorities, he supposedly fled from them. An officer chased him and used a stun gun on him in order to detain him. A subsequent search revealed a large box-cutter on his person.
When someone is taken into custody for alleged crimes, they could face serious consequences if they are convicted. A criminal defense attorney may be able to negotiate a plea agreement with reduced penalties for clients.
Source: Firehouse, “Man Smoking Drugs Causes Florida Store Fire“, Julius Whigham II, September 17, 2013
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