Fredenberg Township Fire May Have Been Set Intentionally, Man Taken Into Custody

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FREDENBERG TOWNSHIP, Minn. — A man in the Fredenberg Township has been arrested after two structures caught fire on his property.

A fire was reported on Thanksgiving morning on the 55-hundred block of Taft Road, where a shed and a barn burned up.

Those who know the property owner reported to the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office that they believe that he has been suffering from “declining mental health for over a month,” adding that he refused to get help.

Those concerns were reported to law enforcement before the fire, but the sheriff’s office says the man’s comments were not enough to warrant an arrest as he had not committed any crimes.

According to the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office, the people that knew him said he would make concerning statements, suggesting he may have wanted a “suicide by cop” situation.

During the fire, the man allegedly told people that he set them ablaze on purpose.

Firefighters were ordered to stay away as the man may have been firing a gun outside.

That afternoon, law enforcement saw him driving nearby and tried to pull him over, but say he sped back to his house.

Knowing that the man might have been armed and dangerous, the sheriff’s office called in their emergency response team.

Deputies executed a search warrant and took the property owner into custody that night without incident.

No one was hurt during the fire or arrest.

The man is now in a hospital undergoing a mental health evaluation while his actions are being investigated.

He will then be booked into jail once he’s released.

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