A man who allegedly set fire to 46 buildings, including nine in West Hollywood, during New Year’s 2012, has been indicted on 49 charges of arson, arson of inhabited buildings and possession of flammable materials.
Harry Burkhart, 24, was arrested on Jan. 2, 2012, by a deputy from the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station who found flammable objects in his automobile. He has pleaded not guilty and has been in custody for more than two years in lieu of $7.5-million bail.
Burkhart, a native of Germany, had been living with his mother, Dorothee, in an apartment on Sunset Boulevard near West Hollywood. He and his mother had fled Germany, where she had been arrested on fraud charges, for Canada and then the United States. Burkhart reportedly was angered by an extradition hearing that resulted in his mother returning to Germany to face fraud charges. Prosecutors said his arson rampage as “motivated by his rage against Americans.”