Police: Man set fire to home

EAST FREEDOM – Police said an East Freedom man nearly burned down his apartment building Friday, but failed when the fire quickly burned out.

Freedom Township Police Chief Terry Dellinger said Raymond Albert Zuest, 21, set curtains on fire near his apartment’s front door, then left the building. Although Zuest allegedly told police the fire was accidental, Dellinger said Zuest likely used a lighter to set the curtains ablaze.

The building – the former Haven Rest Motel – was spared when the fire burned out harmlessly in Zuest’s apartment, Dellinger said.

The building manager later found the fire’s remnants, police said.

Zuest was arrested Friday and charged with risking a catastrophe, a felony, and six counts of reckless endangerment for the lives allegedly put at risk by the fire.

He remains in Blair County Prison in lieu of $50,000. A preliminary hearing is set for Thursday before Magisterial District Judge Craig E. Ormsby.