A Florida man is accused of setting a sheriff’s patrol car on fire while admitting to being “intoxicated” at the time.
The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office stated that Anthony Thomas Tarduno acknowledged starting the fire in the police cruiser shortly before 5 p.m on Wednesday.
Tarduno claimed to have left a Spring Gill, a Florida bar where he was drinking just before 4:30 p.m., according to authorities. The man “thought he’d want to set it on fire” after seeing a patrol car while out walking, according to the sheriff’s office.
According to authorities, the man took a bag of garbage from a dumpster, put it beneath the patrol car, and set the trash on fire.
The sheriff’s office claimed that after allegedly setting the patrol car on fire, Tarduno walked to the bar but subsequently returned to the crime scene to confess because he “felt horrible.”
When Tarduno was asked to explain his actions, he claimed to be “intoxicated” at the time and that he acts foolishly when intoxicated, according to deputies.
According to the sheriff’s office, when the car caught fire, it was severely damaged because the trash had been piled up behind the gas tank.
Tarduno cooperated with the deputies and admitted to being a “professional arsonist” who had committed similar crimes in the past, but he claimed he didn’t target the patrol car and that he would have set fire to any other car in the area, according to officials.
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Initial charges against Tarduno included two counts of arson, and a $30,000 bond was imposed.