Man tries to set fire to his house

Roughly 10 officers responded to the call in the Marcy-Holmes area.

Charred paper rests on the lawn of a house on the 1000 block of Fourth Street Southeast that a man tried to light on fire earlier Saturday afternoon.

Mark Vancleave

Charred paper rests on the lawn of a house on the 1000 block of Fourth Street Southeast that a man tried to light on fire earlier Saturday afternoon.

James Nord

Minneapolis police arrested a man Saturday afternoon after he threatened to set his house on fire and started a small blaze on his lawn.

Roughly 10 officers were at the scene on the 1000 block of Fourth Street Southeast at about 2:30 p.m. They took the man, who was in his 30s, to Hennepin County Medical Center  for crisis treatment.

âÄúHe was just kind of a crazy guy,âÄù said Minneapolis police Sgt. Mike Johnson, who said the man has had encounters with officers before.

University graduate student Marissa Collard, who was in the house next door at the time of the incident, said the man poured gasoline on the porch. He then lit a piece of paper on fire and threw it down onto the soaked concrete, but nothing happened.

A faint smell of gasoline lingered on the porch after police left the scene, and a charred piece of paper sat on the lawn.

Collard said the man recently moved into the house, a rental property. The property management company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Neeraj Rajasekar, a University junior who called the police, said he and his roommates had dealt with the man for about a week prior to SaturdayâÄôs events. Rajasekar said the man was odd and off-putting.

The students said the man told them he had numerous doctorates and that an African king lived in his house.

The manâÄôs father was at the house Sunday afternoon. Police said they were discussing the event with him, and two squad cars were outside of the rental property.

The father said the man was not a University of Minnesota student, but declined to comment further.