California man sets people on fire at a tea shop

Prosecutors charged a 46-year-old Berkeley man with multiple crimes Wednesday after he tried to set multiple people’s hair on fire outside a pizzeria and tea shop earlier this week, authorities said.

At 9:35 p.m. Monday, police responded to reports of the attack in the 2500 block of Durant Avenue. Officers soon learned that two men were eating at Artichoke Basille’s Pizza, 2590 Durant Ave., when a man approached and knocked their food off a table before saying he was going to set them on fire.

As the men began to walk away, the man sprayed them with WD-40 lubricant, police said. Moments later, the same man reportedly approached four people waiting at Feng Cha Teahouse, 2528 Durant Ave., and sprayed at least two people’s hair, managing to briefly light it on fire. Witnesses quickly put out the fire while others tried to hold the man, who had a hatchet.

Officers took the man into custody and searched him, finding matches, lighters, multiple bladed weapons including a machete, and several Molotov cocktails. He was later identified as Brandon McGlone.

On Wednesday, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office charged him with arson, criminal threats, throwing a flammable substance on others, assault with a deadly weapon and possession of destructive devices.

He was in custody Wednesday afternoon at Santa Rita Jail without bail ahead of a Thursday arraignment hearing at Dublin’s East County Hall of Justice, according to a county records check.

Anyone with information is asked to call Berkeley police at 510-981-5900 and reference case Nos. 2020-00042515.


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