Kingsport police: Man arrested after setting tourist home on fire
A Kingsport man is behind bars on multiple charges after police say he set the Ballis Tourist Home on West Sullivan Street on fire.
Ronald Lynn Hudson, 50, is facing charges of aggravated burglary, aggravated assault, attempted aggravated arson and felony vandalism over $1,000.
According to Tom Patton with the Kingsport Police Department, Hudson is accused of entering the home and threatening to stab multiple residents with a knife. He then allegedly kicked open the door to an apartment, ransacked the room, broke a window, barricaded himself inside, and set the room on fire.
Most people had already left the building, but the few remaining were safely evacuated when police and fire crews arrived. An officer approached the apartment and one of the tenants had already kicked the door back open and had tried unsuccessfully to get Hudson to come out.
Police added the officer saw Hudson inside the burning room with a knife in his hand. He ordered him to drop the knife and leave the room. Hudson refused numerous commands to drop the knife and initially advanced upon the officer, but retreated back inside the burning apartment.
Patton said that backup officers came and additional commands were given for him to exit the apartment without the knife. Hudson eventually complied and was arrested without further incident. The fire was then put out by firefighters.
Hudson has been transferred to the Sullivan County Jail where he is being held on a $50,000 bond.
Authorities added that Hudson's motive for this incident is unknown.