fb-pixel

‘Isn’t it the most beautiful thing ever?’ Swampscott man said as home burned

The burnt-out Swampscott home of Timothy P. Brosnan, who was arraigned in Lynn District Court on charges of arson Monday.
The burnt-out Swampscott home of Timothy P. Brosnan, who was arraigned in Lynn District Court on charges of arson Monday.Dina Rudick/Globe Staff

LYNN — As flames and smoke engulfed a Swampscott home Saturday evening, the 57-year-old owner leaned against his car and reveled in the blaze he said he had started, police said.

“Look at it go,” Timothy Brosnan said, while watching the three-alarm fire tear through his Linden Avenue home from across the street, according to a police report filed in Lynn District Court Monday.

Brosnan, a self-employed carpenter, was arrested and charged with arson. Brosnan is to be arraigned Monday in Lynn District Court, police said.

No one was inside the home when the fire broke out, police said. One firefighter was treated for heat exhaustion and was expected to recover.

Advertisement



When crews arrived, Brosnan was laughing and making jokes, saying he was the one who set the fire, police said.

Timothy P. Brosnan was arraigned in Lynn District Court Monday on charges of arson.
Timothy P. Brosnan was arraigned in Lynn District Court Monday on charges of arson.Dina Rudick/Globe Staff/Globe Staff

“He was staring into the house that was on fire and said ‘Isn’t it the most beautiful thing ever?’” police said. “While putting Timothy into the back of the cruiser, he was trying to get one last look at the house.”

According to police, Brosnan said he poured gasoline in the garage and throughout the house, and opened the gas valve inside the house.

“You could smell a strong odor of gas on Timothy,” police wrote.

Police said Brosnan appeared to have been drinking. His eyes were bloodshot, and his speech was slurred.

The fire caused at least $500,000 in damage, fire officials said. The home was built around 2008 and has an assessed value of almost $800,000, records show.


Trisha Thadani can be reached at trisha.thadani@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @TrishaThadani