A New York man who thought he was rescuing his neighbor’s dog from a blazing house fire last week ran into a snag – the house was not on fire.
Michael Orchard, 43, of Halfmoon, is charged with second-degree burglary and third-degree criminal mischief in the Thursday night incident, according to News Channel 13 in Albany. State troopers told the news station that Orchard, who is being held in lieu of $15,000 bail, was hallucinating after mixing LSD and cough syrup earlier that afternoon.
Neighbors told the station that Orchard ran from door to door in their housing development, screaming about a fire. When no one responded to the imaginary fire, he drove his BMW through a fence, broke into the house through the back door, went inside and pulled the family's large white dog out, troopers said.
Troopers found him standing outside with the dog in his arms, the news station reported.
Orchard did not face a drug charge because no illegal substances were found in his possession, News Channel 13 said. He also drove solely through yards on his quest to save the dog, so no charge of driving under the influence was filed.
The dog was not injured, and the owners are getting a new back door.