Man arrested on suspicion of setting small fire in city hall

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) _ Authorities say a man suspected of starting a small fire in a Columbia City Hall restroom had recently been released from prison for illegal burning.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that police arrested the 58-year-old Monday after he allegedly set the fire in a toilet paper holder that was attached to a wall. Assistant Fire Marshal Jim Pasley says the fire caused about $1,000 in damages.

The small fire led the building to be evacuated as special city council meeting was scheduled to begin to discuss the resignation of the city manager.

A witness watched the suspect leave city hall and was able to help direct responding officers to him. The suspect was previously convicted of setting six fires, which were minor and extinguished quickly without any injuries.

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