Man accused of sparking Cohoes blaze out on bail

December 03, 2017 12:06 AM

COHOES -- The man accused of starting Thursday's devastating fire in Cohoes is out on bail.

John Gomes, 51, is facing non-intentional arson and reckless endangerment charges. Police say he was trying to forge a sword with a barrel fire. The wind caught the embers and set his apartment building on Remsen Street on fire.

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Thirty-one buildings were affected along three city blocks in Cohoes. Three of those buildings had to be demolished. The fire was so intense, it melted some equipment owned by T&T Towing.

"The heat was just so bad back here that the items in the building that we stored it just melted,” said Tom Brennan of T&T Towing. “The building itself stayed standing. But it melted partly, too."

While many community members say they're upset with Gomes, they also said they don't believe he started the fire deliberately.


WNYT Staff

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