California man accused of intentionally burning homeless man, taking photos

A Glendale, California, man has been charged with attempted murder after surveillance video obtained by authorities appears to show him setting fire to a homeless man and taking pictures of the aftermath.

Richard Smallets, 32, appeared in court Tuesday for a pretrial hearing, stemming from the Sept. 12 incident and his subsequent arrest, KTLA reported.

According to a Glendale Police Department news release, officers responded to a report of a small sidewalk fire at 1:22 a.m. Sept. 12. Although the blaze was extinguished quickly by the Glendale Fire Department, security camera footage obtained from a nearby business later the same day showed a man “intentionally lighting” the cardboard under which a homeless man slept “then taking photos,” the release stated.

PRESS RELEASEGlendale Man Charged with Attempt MurderGlendale, CA: On September 12, 2019, Glendale Police Department...

Posted by Glendale Police Department on Tuesday, September 24, 2019

The footage also shows the homeless man attempting unsuccessfully to extinguish the flames on him with bottled water, ABC News reported.

Police arrested Smallets the following day after questioning linked him to their arson investigation.
Smallets, who pleaded not guilty to the charges Sept. 16, remains in custody with bail set at $1 million, according to ABC News.

Neither a motive for the attack nor the extent of the victim’s injuries has been released.

Credit: Glendale Police Department

Credit: Glendale Police Department

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