Man arrested, accused of setting fire to door of Savannah office

Crime & Safety

photo: Savannah Fire

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A man was arrested Tuesday after setting fire to the door of a money management office, upset over funds, according to the Savannah Police Department (SPD).

Officers responded to a report of vandalism and a disorderly person at Statewide Health Services, located on Oglethorpe Professional Court, SPD said, and found the front door of the office on fire.

Martin Gates, 51

Savannah Fire responded to the scene and extinguished the fire.

Martin Gates, 51, was located in front of the building and was apprehended after a “brief struggle with officers.”

According to SPD, he receives monthly benefits at the business and became upset when he was denied funds.

“He then went outside and attempted to set fire to both entry doors with two employees still inside the business,” Savannah Police stated, adding, “Mr. Gates was advised to have mental health issues.”

He was taken to a local hospital for treatment for pepper spray exposure before being transported to the Chatham Detention Center.

The two employees were uninjured in the incident.

According to online bookings, Gates faces charges of arson, aggravated assault, terroristic threats and acts, and first degree criminal damage to property.

SPD said a Savannah Fire arson investigator assisted with the investigation.

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