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Police: Man set unoccupied house on fire in Queensbury

Police: Man set unoccupied house on fire in Queensbury

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QUEENSBURY — A South Glens Falls man was arrested Monday for allegedly causing a fire at an unoccupied house under construction.

State Police were conducting a traffic stop at about 9:30 p.m. on Glen Street in Queensbury, when 25-year-old James J. Halpin approached the stopped vehicle and told the trooper that he was monitoring the behavior of the occupants.

Halpin was asked to watch the stop from the sidewalk and he complied. Then, police said he walked down Glen Street and was seen attempting to enter a residence as if he lived there. However, the door was locked and he left quickly, according to a news release.

The trooper was unable to locate Halpin initially, but a short time later observed that the back room of the home was on fire. Another patrol officer assisted in locating Halpin climbing out of a second-story window.

Halpin allegedly yelled obscenities at officers and sat on the roof just above where the fire was burning. Police attempted to talk him off the roof, but had to go up and bring him down.

State Police spokesman Kerra Burns said Halpin is accused of setting insulation in the back room of the house on fire. The insulation and some rafters were damaged, but the fire was extinguished before it spread to the rest of the structure.

Burns said she did not know what was used to start the fire.

Halpin was charged with second-degree burglary and third-degree arson. He was taken to Warren County Jail and released on bail of $20,000 cash or bond.

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