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Man sets neighbor’s house on fire due to longstanding dispute

AP PhotoJohn Raoux (82)
Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office

The Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office is reporting that they have arrested a man who set his neighbor’s house on fire due to a dispute.

The incident occurred Monday afternoon at a home on SE 57th Drive.

Witnesses told authorities that they saw Justin James Ludington walking around his neighbor’s home while hitting it with a hammer and yelling “Going to burn your house down.”

Ludington stacked several wooden pallets of wood near two cars, lit it on fire and then calmly walked away.

Witnesses say the fire spread from the wood, to the cars, and eventually to the home.

Another witness told authorities that Ludington admitted to starting the fire and said “Let it burn.”

Ludington then turned himself in to the sheriff’s office where he was arrested for first-degree arson of an occupied structure and two counts of second-degree arson of a vehicle.

He is currently being held on a $70,000 bond.