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A major wildfire in Utah started thanks to a man who was trying to kill a spider with a lighter, police said Tuesday.
The Utah County Sheriff’s Office arrested the unidentified man on Monday, even as flames consumed a 60-acre area outside of Springville, police said. Authorities also discovered marijuana and other drug paraphernalia in the man’s posession.
“Suspect arrested in fire east of Springville. He told law enforcement he was using a lighter to burn a spider. After he was arrested UCSO Deputies found drugs and paraphernalia in his backpack. He is being booked into jail,” the sheriff’s office announced on Twitter.
Police told reporters they were at a loss for what the man’s thought process was.
“We don’t know why he was doing that,” Sgt. Spencer Cannon told local media on Monday. “He has been arrested and is being booked into jail right now on a fire-related charge.”
“Not sure exactly why he felt the need to have to burn the spider, but you know, all the regret in the world doesn’t change the outcome based on whatever reason there was for him doing that,” he added.
Republican Utah Gov. Spencer Cox mocked the man on Twitter, saying “don’t do drugs kids.” He added several emojis of a man slapping his forehead in embarrassment.
Wildfires have plagued California and Utah for weeks, with firefighters spread across the states fighting blazes that stretch for more than a dozen square miles. 2022 has so far seen 35,000 wildfires that burned 4.7 million acres in the U.S., according to the National Interagency Fire Center.