Landlord Sets Apartment On Fire While Playing Billy Joel’s ‘We Didn’t Start The Fire’

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A landlord in Minnesota, for reasons only known to him, set his apartment on fire earlier this week. He did so while tenants who lived below him were still in the building.

Travis Carlson is said to have drilled holes in his truck’s gas tank in order to fill up several gas cans with the fuel. He then made repeated trips in and out of the building before setting his apartment on fire.

Travis Carlson Landlord Fire Billy Joel We Didn't Start The Fire
Landlord arrested for setting his apartment on fire (Image Credit: Saint Louis County Jail)

A neighbor who witnessed the 37-year-old landlord’s odd behavior called 911. They described seeing a “flash like a fireball” coming from the upstairs apartment. Police arrived on the scene shortly after 4 am.

Upon arriving officers saw that the upstairs apartment was on fire. They also heard the Billy Joel song “We Didn’t Start the Fire” coming from inside the apartment.

A tenant who lives in the apartment underneath Carlson’s said he woke up at around 3:30 am to the sound of the landlord “smashing glass and breaking things” in his upstairs apartment.

After about 20 minutes there was a knock on the door. The tenant explained to police that it was his landlord informing him that “the house is on fire.”

In addition to the fire, it was discovered that the electrical paneling had several wires pulled out. Fire investigators determined that there were holes dilled into Carlson’s gas tank and they found lids to gas cans on the ground nearby.

A Landlord That Sets Fire To The Apartment Might Be A Sign It’s Time To Move

Carlson, who is presumed to have started the fire despite the claims of the Billy Joel song, was not found until the next day.

When he was found, the landlord had burn injures to his arms and legs. Carlson appeared in court for the first time on Tuesday.

The judge set his bail at $75,000. He remained in the St. Louis County Jail after his court appearance.

You really don’t do yourself any favors by playing “We Didn’t Start The Fire” as your apartment is on fire. There’s really no way to claim that it was an accident.

Complicating things slightly for the landlord is the fact that he also burned himself and left a ton of evidence at the scene. If you’re going to burn down your own apartment, not that you ever should, you want to avoid almost everything this guy did.

Written by Sean Joseph

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