UPDATE: Arson Ruled Out In Pike Fires


Massachusetts State Police from the Charlton Barracks have determined that two suspicious fires along the Massachusetts Turnpike in Sturbridge and Warren this morning were not intentionally set. Rather, the investigation determined that materials on a commercial vehicle ignited by accident but were improperly disposed of. As a result, the two defendants will not face arson charges, but will be charged in connection to their improper disposal of the burning material.

Troopers responded to a call for what someone thought was a truck fire on the westbound side of the Turnpike in Sturbridge at 11:31 a.m. Troopers found no truck at the scene, but located material and debris burning along with accelerants. The fire was extinguished by firefighters. A short time later, another caller reported a similar fire alongside the highway in Warren.

Shortly after the second fire, State Police received information that a truck with commercial plates believed to be connected to the fires had pulled into the Ludlow Service Plaza. Troopers responded and located the truck, a Chevrolet 2500 with ladder racks.

One occupant of the truck, ALBERT LENZI, 53, of Troy, N.Y., was taken into custody and subsequently charged with Depositing Flaming Material On Or Near Open Fields, Operating With A Suspended License (4th Offense), Improper Disposal Of Trash, and Disorderly Conduct .  He is being held at the State Police Barracks in Charlton on $540.00 bail.

A second occupant, 36-year-old THOMAS LAW of Cohoes, N.Y., left before troopers arrived.  He was subsequently located in Ludlow and will be summonsed for Depositing Flaming Material On Or Near Open Fields, Improper Disposal Of Trash, and Disorderly Conduct .

No further information is available at this time. We will update this post when more information can be released.