HOUSTON—Investigators say a suspected arsonist was caught after he returned to the crime scene as a customer.
Micheal Fuller, 19, was arrested at Zells Beverages in North Harris County on Thursday afternoon.
Fuller reportedly set fires behind the strip mall two days in a row earlier this month.
Surveillance cameras caught a clear image of his face. Posters went up around the strip mall offering a $5,000 reward to anyone who helped catch him.
The clerk who was at Zells said he had to do a double take when Fuller came strolling in to make a purchase.
“When I seen the guy, I’m thinking, ’He actually came back?’ Once we passed out the fliers we figured he wouldn’t come back,” explained David Cormir.
Cormir and a second clerk helped distract Fuller until authorities arrived.
According to the Harris County Fire Marshal, Fuller admitted he was “messed up” and that is why he set the fires. However, the explanation didn’t stop there.
Fuller didn’t seem to have a problem talking from the back of a county squad car.
“I had started it, and I didn’t know,” Fuller said. “They laced my drink, and I didn’t know what I was doing.”
Fuller said he wasn’t in his right mind. He said he apologized immediately after he was caught.
“I said, alright, I ain’t tripping. If I did it, my bad. I’m sorry for doing it,” he added. “I’m trying to see if I can work something out, see if I can work it off.”
Fuller is now behind bars at the Harris County Jail on arson charges.
Meanwhile, Cormir and a fellow clerk are waiting to see if they get the $5,000 Crime Stoppers reward for helping solve the arson at their own store.