MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis man is waking up in jail after police say he set his former residence and ex-roommate’s car on fire Wednesday in Southwest Memphis.
Police responded to the incident around 4 p.m Wednesday on McFarland Drive after a report stating that someone was busting out windows to a vehicle.
When officers arrived, they saw firefighters putting out flames on a vehicle in front of the house on McFarland.
Investigators talked to a witness who said they saw Artavis Butler recording the fire and heard him say “the house was next.”
MFD extinguished the fire. The arson investigator told police that they would not come investigate since there were no victims inside the car.
Police left the scene but returned shortly after because they received another call stating the house on McFarland was now on fire.
The owner of the car told investigators he used to be roommates with Butler at that residence but he kicked him out about 4 months ago.
Police were able to stop Butler and when questioning him they said he told them he came to the house to make sure no one was inside while it burned.
Butler was present when officers arrived. When police questioned him they said he told them he came to the house to make sure no one was inside while it burned.
A neighbor we talked to who asked us not to identify her called the situation sad.
“Very sad. Especially during Christmas holidays. It’s really bad,” she said.
Butler was taken into custody and has multiple charges against him including arson and unlawful carrying of a weapon.
He is being held on a $45,000 bond.