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A 50-year-old San Mateo County man has been charged with trying to set fire to a room he was renting in the coastal town of Miramar, according to the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office. Lars Ehlers on Monday pleaded not guilty to one felony charge of arson in connection with the case, which was reported to the sheriff’s office at about 10:55 p.m. on Saturday, District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.
Deputies were dispatched to a home in the 400 block of Alameda Avenue after receiving a report that Ehlers was allegedly texting threats to his landlord that he was going to burn his house, according to the sheriff’s office. Ehlers had recently been told that he was going to be evicted from the room he rented, according to reports. Deputies searched Ehlers’ room and found a scorched patch of carpet, as well as burn marks on three wooden rails of an adjacent deck. A bottle of lighter fluid was found on a shelf in Ehlers’ bedroom, according to the sheriff’s office.
Ehlers was arrested for arson and booked at San Mateo County jail, where he remains in custody on $100,000 bail. He is scheduled to be back in court for a preliminary hearing on July 19.
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