BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office has arrested a 24-year-old man on aggravated arson, simple battery, and simple burglary.
According to the affidavit, Baton Rouge Fire Investigators were responding to a call around 12:00 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 11 in the 1800 block of Boulevard de Providence about a vehicle fire. Upon arrival, firefighters found two vehicles on fire and a man being detained by complex security.
The man was identified as Johan Mendez, 24.
Witnesses told investigators they had seen Mendez allegedly committing a burglary to a vehicle. After being confronted by the owner of the vehicle, Mendez continued to engage the vehicle’s owner.
EBRSO says after Mendez’s failed attempt to get the keys from the owner, Mendez then grabbed a gas can and an air compressor from a different vehicle. Mendez stood on top of the victim’s vehicle, poured the content of the gas can on the vehicle, and used a lighter to ignite the flame.
Fire investigators say the fire was determined to be intentionally set and in close proximity to an occupied multi-family complex.