A man from Austin, Texas, has been charged with arson after he set fire to a rug in an apartment on Thursday to make a political statement and prove he wasn't a "loser." Austin Fire crews responded to a call at the Whisper Hollow Apartments at around 7:30pm after a request from the Austin Police Department, who had received a call for a disturbance between a mother and her son.
The report says police arrived at the apartment, the officer heard a voice from inside the apartment yell "He won't let me answer the door!" and "He won't let me go!" Officers then forced entry into the apartment.
According to an affidavit, Police found evidence of a small fire inside the apartment and detained Scout Anthony Thomas Hodge, 20, while waiting for the fire crews.
Police say Hodge's mother was being held in a bear hug by Hodge because he said that if police were allowed inside, he would be committed to a psychiatric facility.
When the fire department arrived, they found fire debris outside the apartment. According to police, the fire was set inside and moved to the exterior by Hodge. The fire department found a hole burned in the rug, and made sure the fire was extinguished. Damage was estimated at $100.
Upon questioning, police say Hodge waived his Miranda rights and told investigators he was in his room and began to get in a bad mood because of a programme he was watching about politics.
Hodge said he then burned a Syria hat with a lighter and placed it on the rug, all of which was recorded on Instagram.
Police say Hodge was trying to make a political statement and let people know he is not a "loser." The fire spread to the rug and caused fire damage to a larger rug underneath. When his mother began to yell at him, Hodge picked up the burning rug and placed it outside, causing fire damage to the side of the building.
Hodge is charged with arson, a state jail felony, as well as unlawful restraint.