Teen charged with setting fire to 10 cars

PORTLAND, Maine, April 12 (UPI) -- A 19-year-old man has been charged with setting 10 cars on fire in an early morning arson spree in Portland, Maine.

Three of the fires spread to apartment buildings, forcing their evacuation, the Portland Press-Herald reported. Residents of one building had to flee in a hurry when a car exploded.


Break-ins and vandalism to another nine cars were reported.

Thomas Cassidy was arrested Friday morning near one of the most recent fires. He was being held in lieu of $250,000 bail, pending a court appearance Monday.

Police Chief Tim Burton said Cassidy appeared to have no fixed address and had been staying with friends.

"As near as we can tell right now, he tended to float," Burton said.

The fires strained Portland's Fire Department's resources. A company from neighboring South Portland responding to one fire spotted another one en route.

"We were at one fire and we would look up and see the next fire," said Deputy Fire Chief Michael Shutts. "They were that close."

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