Man admits setting 9 fires in his neighborhood, gets 2 years

A 44-year-old Louisiana man has admitted setting nine fires in his neighborhood — the last six on his own street.

Authorities say he confessed while being interviewed about the last fire, which was set in a car outside his home.

Prosecutors announced Wednesday that Herman Thomas of Bogalusa unexpectedly pleaded guilty at his arraignment on Monday, admitting to one count of aggravated arson and eight of simple arson.

District Attorney Warren Montgomery says District Judge William "Rusty" Knight sentenced Thomas to six years for the aggravated arson, with four years suspended, and two years each for the fires. The sentences run concurrently, so that amounts to two years in prison without parole.

The fires plagued the neighborhood from July 2015 through November 2017

Montgomery said Thomas told the homeowner and other people that he had seen men trying to steal from a car the night before. Montgomery said they found a newspaper burning under a seat when Thomas and another man approached the car.