LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – A Las Vegas man is facing a charge of first-degree arson after he allegedly set a bed on fire inside a motel while high on methamphetamine, authorities said.
Vinicio Samaniego, 42, is also charged with possession of meth and is being held in jail on $25,000 bond, records show.
He also allegedly was screaming that people were in his room shooting machine guns, according to authorities.
According to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, officers were dispatched to the Motel 6 on Boulder Highway and South Lamb Boulevard just before midnight on Jan. 1 for a report that a man told the front desk “his nephew was being held against his will. ”
“The call further stated the subject had been drinking and placed a mattress in the bathtub to block bullets,” an arrest report from Las Vegas police states, as the subject was later identified as Samaniego.
When police arrived, the report says they found that the Clark County Fire Department had already responded to extinguish a fire inside the room. Outside of the room was a mattress that had been burned.
The bathroom walls and ceiling in the room were also scorched and several adjoining rooms had to be evacuated.
Samaniego spoke with officers, who noted he appeared to be under the influence of a controlled substance and was erratic in his speech, stating multiple people were attempting to kill him.
According to the report, “Samaniego told the officer someone was ‘hanged’ outside of his motel room before multiple subjects came into his room shooting ‘machine guns.’”
“While walking Samaniego to my patrol car, Samaniego stated in an excited utterance, “Ok can I be honest? I started the fire.”
Samaniego was arrested for Arson. A small baggie of meth was found in his pocket. Police said they located a Vegas Golden Knights-themed lighter, which Samaniego said he used to start the fire.
The suspect claimed to police that he started the fire to protect his family.
On Jan. 3, Samaniego refused to be taken to court. His next appearance is scheduled for Thursday.
He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
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