ATHENS, Ala. (TCD) -- A Tennessee man was arrested this week after allegedly throwing a refrigerator and microwave into a bathtub and trying to light his Alabama hotel room on fire.
According to the News Courier, Athens Police Department officers responded to a call Tuesday at approximately 3:30 a.m. about a fire at the Budget Inn on U.S. 31. The hotel owner reportedly told officers the man suspected of starting the fire, Robert Ledbetter, "had taken off on a red motorcycle" in the direction of a nearby Circle K store.
Officers reportedly found the 44-year-old at Circle K and asked about the fire in the room. According to the News Courier, which cites the police report, Ledbetter reportedly told officers "someone followed him from Nashville." He reportedly said he filed a report with law enforcement officials in Nashville, but Nashville Metro Police reportedly "have no records of Robert filing a report."
Ledbetter allegedly believed the same person who supposedly followed him tried entering his hotel room via the air conditioning unit, the News Courier reports. Athens Police wrote in their report that Ledbetter gathered the furniture in his room and piled it near the door. In order to prevent someone from entering through the shower, Ledbetter allegedly threw the hotel room's microwave and refrigerator into the tub.
The News Courier reports police wrote Ledbetter "attempted to melt the window by igniting a sheet tied to a curtain rod" because the door would not unlock. The curtains caught fire and Ledbetter allegedly ripped off drywall near the window.
According to the arrest report cited by the News Courier, Ledbetter "tried to burn the interior of the wall" because he needed to "escape his hallucination."
The report says, "Robert told me he used his motorcycle helmet to break open the window. Robert's motorcycle helmet had dents and scratches matching the described use."
The News Courier reports officers found no evidence of tampering or someone trying to break into the hotel room.