Man accused of trying to set sleeping homeless man on fire

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A California man has been arrested after he allegedly set a homeless person on fire and then took photos of him earlier this month. Richard Smallets, 32, was later charged with attempted murder, the Glendale Police Department announced Tuesday.

Police said officers went to assist the Glendale Fire Department with a small fire on a sidewalk on September 12. Officers found a homeless man was sleeping underneath the cardboard boxes when he was awakened by the smoke, authorities said.

According to police, the man realized the cardboard was on fire and attempted to put out the flames with bottled water, but his attempts were unsuccessful. The local fire department quickly arrived and extinguished the flames.

Upon their investigation, detectives checked surveillance video from a nearby business and found a man later identified as Smallets “intentionally” lighting the cardboard on fire and then taking photos, police said. Authorities investigated further and questioned Smalletts, who they later connected to the alleged arson. 

A day later, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office filed attempted murder charges. Smallets remains in custody and his bail was set at $1,000,000.00, according to authorities.

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