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Tampa police arrest man in early morning arson at vacant house

TAMPA — An abandoned house went up in flames early Friday and Tampa police quickly arrested a man they say intentionally set the fire.

A security guard from a nearby Days Inn saw the house, at 3003 N 48th St., burning at about 3:27 a.m. and called 911, police said. Firefighters arrived and quickly doused the blaze, which had engulfed the house.

As police officers arrived and began to block traffic in the area, they saw Anthony Lamar Bennett, 28, standing at the southeast corner of E 21st Avenue and Melbourne Boulevard, officials said. When they talked with him, Bennett admitted to setting the blaze, police said. His reason for doing so was unclear.

No one was injured in the fire.

Bennett was arrested on a charge of first-degree arson and booked in the Hillsborough County Jail. He was held without bail.

Tampa police arrest man in early morning arson at vacant house 07/19/13 [Last modified: Friday, July 19, 2013 11:39am]
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