A Bradford, VT man has been arrested on Arson charges after starting a fire in the Lebanon Police Department lobby on Thursday, October 21, 2021. The male, identified as, Michael Fleming, age 38, of Bradford, VT had just been released on personal recognizance bail stemming from a theft arrest. After being released to the lobby, Lebanon officers offered Fleming a ride home, but he was uncooperative with officers.
As officers left the lobby area, Fleming removed a lighter from his backpack and walked to the Dispatch window, where he proceeded to light a box of facial tissues on fire. He then began to fuel the flames by dumping hand sanitizer on the burning box.
Corporal Ryan Brewster went into the lobby and pushed Fleming out of the way to stomp out the flames, catching his boot and pant leg on fire. Fleming then threw the hand sanitizer bottle at Officers, almost striking Corporal Brewster and Sergeant Garrett Hubert. Corporal Brewster was able to kick the box outside the front doors and smolder the flames. The carpet at the front entrance and section of the lobby floor were still on fire and were eventually extinguished.
Fleming was placed into protective custody and transported to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.
Arson is a Class B Felony, additionally, Fleming was charged with Simple Assault and Contempt, both Class A Misdemeanors. He is presently at the Grafton County House of Corrections awaiting arraignment at the Grafton County Superior Court.
Authorized by: Chief Phillip J. Roberts Date: 10/28/21