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Vt. firefighter arrested for fire station arson

He told police he ripped down the smoke detectors, turned the stove on high, ignited cardboard and tossed the burning paper into one of the fire trucks

By FireRescue1 Staff

ALBANY, Vt. — A firefighter was arrested after he was caught on camera torching the town’s brand new fire house.

WCAX reported that James Joerg, a 45-year-old volunteer firefighter with the Albany Volunteer Fire Department, was one of the first firefighters on scene at the fire Sunday.

Responding firefighters watched their building burn and the flames trapped their tools inside.

"You know everything's right there to fight the fire but you just can't get to it to do so," Asst. Chief Josh Pilbin said.

Firefighter Joerg has been charged with second degree arson and reckless endangerment, according to the report. He told police he ripped down the smoke detectors, turned the stove on high, ignited the cardboard and tossed the burning paper into one of the fire trucks, according to the report.

"It's surprising when you see somebody quite often and to know that they could do something like that," said resident Bernie Alden.

According to court papers, firefighter Joerg told police he had frequent urges to set fires and admitted he was dangerous.

Firefighter Joerg is being held for lack of $250,000 bail and a judge also ordered a competency and sanity evaluation, according to the report.

WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

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Dan Finn Dan Finn Friday, August 16, 2013 9:09:49 AM 2nd degree arson? WTF
Thomas Beal Thomas Beal Friday, August 16, 2013 9:16:09 AM My thoughts exactly.
Dave Mihaich Dave Mihaich Friday, August 16, 2013 11:05:27 AM Don't give him jail time.Just turn him over to his fellow firefighters, but first make sure there's no camera's around.....
Michael R. Bernstein Michael R. Bernstein Friday, August 16, 2013 11:11:02 AM SET his house on fire. If he LOVES fire that much, BURN HIS SH*T DOWN!
Jason Low Jason Low Friday, August 16, 2013 11:16:30 AM He doesn't have any "fellow" firefighters.
Karen Knight Lane Karen Knight Lane Friday, August 16, 2013 11:18:43 AM Wow....
Stephen Melton Stephen Melton Friday, August 16, 2013 11:45:33 AM Douchebag...
Darrell Crawford Darrell Crawford Friday, August 16, 2013 12:00:57 PM I will NEVER understand this. I have an urge around fire too, to put it OUT, that's part of why I am a Firefighter. Now this place is out one brand new station and who know's what else they have lost. As a Volunteer Firefighter I know the value of every piece of equipment we have, because if any of it is lost it would be hard to replace. I feel for this community and wish this guy would have gotten help instead of joining the Department.
Dan Roys Dan Roys Friday, August 16, 2013 12:17:48 PM yeah why 2nd degree, damn idiot makes the rest of us look bad,
John Blaze Erlandson John Blaze Erlandson Friday, August 16, 2013 12:18:15 PM I know it is only August but I am 100% certain we have the DOUCHEBAG of the year here!
Zach Pederson Zach Pederson Friday, August 16, 2013 12:20:50 PM Why the F isnt it 1st degree?!!! What is wrong with these people!?
Steve Price Lpn Steve Price Lpn Friday, August 16, 2013 12:25:59 PM Jason Low NOT ANYMORE
Tyree Thomas Tyree Thomas Friday, August 16, 2013 12:28:43 PM Total disgrace. We all should go and burn everything he loves to the ground. Every building he's ever been in should be burned to the ground.
David Hodges David Hodges Friday, August 16, 2013 12:57:20 PM Don't even refer to him as a "firefighter." He's an arsonist. BIG DIFFERENCE. This is a low as you can get.
Gene Rabuck Gene Rabuck Friday, August 16, 2013 1:14:31 PM FRY HIS ASS COME ON WTF.
Kelli Sawyers Kelli Sawyers Friday, August 16, 2013 1:17:12 PM no sympathy for this assjacket! none what so ever! make him rebuild the station by hand, all alone, then fry his ass! sure, now that's he's caught he wants to cry crazy, well guess what? he's not crazy, he's mad he got caught! and don't ever again refer to this assjacket as a Firefighter, he does not deserve that title!
Bonster Hamibee Bonster Hamibee Friday, August 16, 2013 1:28:26 PM ditto
Bill Doss Bill Doss Friday, August 16, 2013 2:27:26 PM Based on my experience, I'm surprised that he's not 19 years old and that he didn't use a highway flare to ignite the fire. I saves stories like this and have literally dozens of examples of young volunteers starting fires that way.
Joanne Lafromboise-Anderson Joanne Lafromboise-Anderson Friday, August 16, 2013 3:21:09 PM I'm hoping that this shit bag gets one hell of a punishment, I'm mean don't you think that if you have such an earge to set anything on fire its time to well ya know GET HELP. but no that would just be to easy. douche
Ty Chapman Ty Chapman Friday, August 16, 2013 3:34:17 PM He should be locked up! What a looser and a menace to society!
William Samuel William Samuel Friday, August 16, 2013 4:16:17 PM Depends on the state but first degree might be where the building is occupied at the time of the fire.
Brian Benson Brian Benson Friday, August 16, 2013 5:36:01 PM I thought if he went in deliberately setting the fire that would be considered 1st degree, oh well hope he someday gets burnt real bad when he's playing with fire.
Chris Werner Chris Werner Friday, August 16, 2013 7:01:36 PM Dangerous g-d felon...NOT a firefighter. Was NEVER a firefighter!
Kittys Property Kittys Property Friday, August 16, 2013 7:48:53 PM William Samuel It was, he was in it!
Jeremiah King Jeremiah King Friday, August 16, 2013 7:53:35 PM Idiots!
Barry Lentin Barry Lentin Friday, August 16, 2013 9:23:20 PM he does not have the right to be let out into the public he is a danger, he also admitted it, lock him up and through the key away, hope you get life you fucking sicko.
Jaime Nunez Sotomayor Jaime Nunez Sotomayor Saturday, August 17, 2013 8:59:26 AM Uuuuuups! An infiltrated arsonist. And a bearded fire chief! Does he know that all SCBA makers agree in that beard does not allows correct mask seal?
David Ballard David Ballard Thursday, September 05, 2013 6:55:23 AM Competency and sanity evaluation? What for? Of course he is incompetent and insane. A sane/competent person does not do this. I think we have to assume Incompetent/Insane util proven otherwise...
David Ballard David Ballard Thursday, September 05, 2013 6:57:30 AM Does a guy like this really have zero red flags on his background check or hiring/review board? We are a 100% volunteer dept, but still do both.
Tracee Thorne Blissett Tracee Thorne Blissett Thursday, September 05, 2013 7:10:21 AM I am truly speechless.
Gerrit Slade Gerrit Slade Friday, September 27, 2013 12:06:40 PM David Hodges, please check your "other" message folder. I'm trying to get in touch with a mutual friend.

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