Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - On May 25, 2023, at approximately 2:15 a.m., Missoula Police Department officers were dispatched to S. 3rd Street West and Russell Street for a report of a male who had lit a tree on fire.

According to Detective Lt. Eddie McLean, the male was last seen walking west on 3rd St.

"Officers made contact with the male, who threatened he was going to cover the officer in gasoline and then light him on fire," McLean said. "The male began actively throwing gasoline in the direction of the two officers and had a lighter in his hand. He was ultimately arrested with no injury to the officers."

McLean said officers located an additional five fires along the road, which were extinguished and no injuries were reported as a result of the fires.

"During a subsequent interview, the male admitted to buying socks with the purpose to put the socks in vents or other exposed pipes," McLean said. "He claimed to accomplish this in at least two houses. This represents a significant health and safety concern. The Missoula Police Department is requesting residents in the Lewis and Clark neighborhood to the area of S. 3rd and Russell Streets inspect any external vents or exhaust ports. If any obstruction is located, please call the 9-1-1 so evidence can be collected."

McLean said the male was arrested for six counts of Arson and two counts of Assault on a Peace Officer. The male is currently in custody at the Missoula County Detention Facility.

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