An Irishman going through a bitter divorce allegedly set fire to his family’s home, worth close to $780,000, so that his wife wouldn’t be able to have it.
Timothy Brosnan, 57, was discovered by police this past weekend leaning against his Honda SUV, watching his family’s two story home in Swampscott, a suburb of Boston, burn.
He is said to have told cops, “I did that,” before describing the blaze as “the most beautiful thing ever.”
When the police put him under arrest, he called them a “buzz kill” for not letting him watch the house burn.
Brosnan, a father of three, appeared before the Lynn District Court in Massachusetts on Monday on charges of arson.
Citing “irreconcilable differences,” Brosnan’s wife, Mary, filed for divorce in April.
The house, which the family built in April, was to be granted to Mary the day after the fire.
According to The Irish Sun, his lawyer, Gary Zerola, stated, “My understanding is the probate court gave the wife possession of the house and they were to split the mortgage while the divorce proceeding is pending.”
He called his client “a kindhearted soul, a generous man, a tremendously loving father,” and stated that Brosnan had been going through a very difficult time in his life. It’s the end of a 27-year marriage.”
In an affidavit, Brosnan accused his wife of infidelity and claimed that earlier this year he had returned from a three month trip to his native Ireland to find his wife and children had moved out of the home.
He wrote, “After my wife and the children left the home, I fell into a deep depression and severe loneliness.
“I feel it is only fair that, since my wife abandoned me and our home 11 months ago, I have the right to stay in the home that I built.”
The police report of the incident states, “In the process of arresting Timothy he was laughing and making jokes.
“He was staring into the house that was on fire and said, ‘isn’t this the most beautiful thing ever’. He would laugh out loud and say, ‘yes I did that.’”
According to his lawyer, Brosnan “allegedly told officers he made sure ‘no one was home, not even the cat’ before he poured gasoline throughout the house and garage, opened a gas valve and set the place alight.”
Brosnan may face further charges. One of the firefighters who attended to the blaze was treated in hospital for heat exhaustion.