Man charged with starting fire at Albany Medical College

Friday, August 9, 2013
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— City police said a local man is facing numerous felony charges after breaking into Albany Medical College and starting a fire that damaged three floors of the R Building on the campus early this morning.

Investigators said Michael McAllister, 54, then turned up at the scene as firefighters were dousing the blaze and turned himself in to authorities. Police spokesman Steve Smith said he was taken into custody without incident.

“He was very cooperative,” he said. “He actually turned himself in.”

Smith said there were no injuries and the blaze was quickly extinguished by city firefighters. He said three floors of the building sustained damage from either fire, smoke or water.

The building, which houses the college’s administrative offices, was empty at the time of the fire. Smith said the fire had no impact on Albany Med’s patient or hospital functions.

McAllister was charged with felony counts of first-degree reckless endangerment and second-degree arson. He was also charged with misdemeanor counts of criminal mischief and burglary, Smith said.

McAllister was arraigned in the Albany City Court and sent to the Albany County Jail. The college referred questions to police or fire officials, but released a succinct statement indicating none of their operations were affected.

“There was a small fire early Friday morning in an administrative building Albany Medical College. No one was injured. Hosptial and educational operations were not effected,” the statement reads.

 

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