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Wednesday, August 10, 2022
Generic Crime
Generic Crime

A McDonald’s bathroom was set ablaze by a man Sunday night, Gainesville Police said.

John Anthony Hernandez-Ramos, 27, of Putnam County, was arrested for lighting a fire at McDonald’s, at 1206 W University Ave, at about 9:40 p.m., GPD Cpl. Lisa Scott wrote in an email.

Hernandez-Ramos filled a plastic soda bottle with 69 cents worth of gasoline at Circle K, at 1255 W University Ave,before walking down the street to the fast food place, Scott said.

He walked into the men’s bathroom with the bottle in hand. Hernandez-Ramos poured the gasoline on the floor and in the trash can. He lit a handful of tissues on fire and threw them on the gasoline in hopes of starting a large fire, according to an arrest report.

Several people were inside the fast food place when Hernandez-Ramos set the fire and ran outside, police said. The hallway filled with smoke when someone opened the bathroom door.

After fire rescue put out the fire, police found burnt tissue paper and the soda bottle still half-full in the bathroom, the report said. There were large burnt areas on the floor, but the report did not mention the cost of the damage.

The McDonald’s remained open despite the incident, a manager said.
A woman told police she was standing outside the McDonald’s when she saw Hernandez-Ramos run outside, police said.

She saw him again thirty minutes later a few blocks away and asked him what he did, the report said.

“You know what I did,” Hernandez-Ramos told her, according to the report. “I lit the bathroom on fire.”

Police found Hernandez-Ramos at SweetBerries, at 505 NW 13th St., about three hours later. Officers noticed he smelled like gasoline and his eyes were bloodshot, the report said.

Hernandez-Ramos confessed to setting the fire and told police gasoline splashed into his eyes while he was pouring it, the report said.

Hernandez-Ramos was charged with arson and is being held in the Alachua County Jail in lieu of a $500,000 bond.

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