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Tallahassee man arrested for setting fire to homeless camp

Newborn was charged with first-degree arson of a dwelling with people present, attempted...
Newborn was charged with first-degree arson of a dwelling with people present, attempted homicide while engaged in arson and resisting arrest without violence.(Leon County Jail)
Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 12:11 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - A Tallahassee man is facing several charges after authorities say he set fire to a tent with a woman inside at a homeless encampment.

A probable cause affidavit from the Tallahassee Police Department says almost 20% of that woman’s body was covered with burns. The incident happened in a wooded area near the 2700 block of North Monroe Street on Saturday, Oct. 9.

Police say the victim overheard the suspect, 33-year-old Colby Newborn, screaming and yelling that someone had stolen his bike. Moments later, she smelled something burning while she was sleeping and realized her tent was on fire, the affidavit says.

The victim told police she saw Newborn walk through the campsite, lighting several things on fire with a small, handheld torch.

Newborn tried to run away from TPD officers, but they caught and arrested him, the affidavit says. Newborn was charged with first-degree arson of a dwelling with people present, attempted homicide while engaged in arson and resisting arrest without violence.

He was taken to the Leon County Jail without incident.

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