Machete-wielding man arrested following arson, escape effort
ORLEANS PARISH - Authorities booked a man late Wednesday night after he attempted to set his brother's property on fire.
The man also created a disturbance with a machete and tried to escape police custody. The machete-wielding man has been identified as Mazen Hamdan.
Around 11:45 a.m. the New Orleans Fire Department was contacted to assist with an investigation of an altercation involving a fire on Jonquil Street. The owner of the property told authorities he was doing renovation work on the home when his brother, Hamdan, showed up demanding money.
According to authorities, an altercation ensued between the two and the victim said Hamdan threatened to burn down the house. He victim said his brother got a gas can from his truck and started pouring it on the floor of the house.
The victim also said Hamdan went to several other properties he owns and caused trouble. In one instance, Hamdan was armed with a machete.
Deputies confirmed the home was under renovation and was unoccupied at the time. Pour patterns were discovered on the floor and authorities noticed the smell of gasoline.
Hamdan was taken into custody through a traffic stop. During the stop, Hamdan said he was suffering from medical distress and asked to be taken to an area hospital. When the ambulance arrived, Hamdan attempted to flee.
Authorities say he was taken to the hospital for evaluation then transferred to jail.
Hamdan faces one count each of simple criminal damage and simple escape, filed by the New Orleans Police Department and one count of simple arson filed by Louisiana State Fire Marshal’s Office.