Man charged as serial trash arsonist across Cambridge and Somerville

Cambridge Police report arresting a homeless man on charges he set numerous trash barrels and recycling bins on fire over a two-hour period in Cambridge and Somerville yesterday morning.

Paul Ankuda, 58, was nabbed in Harvard Square and was charged with eight counts of vandalism and defacement of property, at least for the fires in Cambridge, Cambridge Police say.

Police add they are also investigating whether Ankuda had anything to do with a mulch fire at the Buckingham Browne & Nichols boathouse on Gerry's Landing Road around 7:40 a.m. that spread to the boathouse.

Innocent, etc.

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I still wonder about

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the suspected arsonist back in 2013 where there were a bunch of mysterious house fires in Somerville. It was a bit terrifying to the point where I woke up to the smell of smoke and thought the worst one morning. As far as I recall, there was no closure to that, though the random fires did seem to cease.

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I've heard speculation that

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I've heard speculation that the arsonist was someone working for a traveling show that was in town for a couple months that summer. The fires started when they came to town and ended right about when they left.

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This guy was wreaking havoc

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This guy was wreaking havoc on the T also. He set a fire on a redline car and maybe a barrel or 2?

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A cry for help?

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Or just a run of the mill sociopath?

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