Police: Man laughed, cheered after torching cruiser

Arthur Burnham was harged with arson of a motor vehicle

SOUTHBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — Southbridge police have arrested a man they say laughed and cheered after dousing a cruiser in gasoline and setting it on fire right outside the police station.

Arthur Burnham (Image Courtesy: Southbridge Police Dept.)
Arthur Burnham (Image Courtesy: Southbridge Police Dept.)

Police said on Facebook that 45-year-old Arthur Burnham entered the station’s rear parking lot at about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday and set the unoccupied cruiser on fire. No one was hurt.

He was immediately arrested and charged with arson of a motor vehicle and malicious destruction of property. He was held on $5,000 cash bail and is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

Officer Ryan Chase tells The Telegram & Gazette that Burnham is homeless and is “very well known to the department.”

In video posted by WFXT-TV, Burnham can be heard shouting “They’re civil rights violators” as he’s being handcuffed.

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