An Arnaudville man accused of setting the home he was living in on fire has been arrested, the Louisiana Office of State Fire Marshal announced Thursday.
James Penland, 28, was booked into the St. Landry Parish Jail on one count of simple arson in connection with the fire on Wednesday in the 200 block of Alex Richard Road, the Fire Marshal's Office said.
The Arnaudville Fire Department called on the state on the Fire Marshal's Office to assist in determining the origin and cause of the house fire.
Investigators learned Penland, who lived in the home, had made a comment earlier in the day to his mother, who owned the home, that he was going to burn the house down, the Fire Marshal's Office said in a news release.
Around 7 p.m. Wednesday, the release says, a neighbor saw the house on fire with Penland sitting on top of a bird cage in the back yard. The neighbor told investigators that when she confronted Penland about the fire, he admitted setting it.
Investigators identified the area of origin as the corner of a bedroom and determined the fire was incendiary.
In an interview with investigators, Penland confessed to starting the fire and then retreating to the bird cage to watch as it burned, the Fire Marshal's Office said.