Crime

Man tried to set another man on fire, according to police

Christopher Allen Schnaidt, 19, was arrested May 23, 2011, on suspicion of attempted murder, assault and failing to appear in court for a separate case. Original story »
Christopher Allen Schnaidt, 19, was arrested May 23, 2011, on suspicion of attempted murder, assault and failing to appear in court for a separate case. Original story »

A man with ties to Paso Robles and Fresno has been accused of trying to light another man on fire earlier this month, the Paso Robles Police Department confirmed.

Christopher Allen Schnaidt, 19, was arrested May 23 on suspicion of attempted murder, assault with a flammable liquid and on a warrant for failing to appear in court in a separate case.

Police disclosed details of the incident Tuesday afternoon after an inquiry by The Tribune.

On May 15, police responded to a fight between Schnaidt and the purported male victim at a parking lot along Riverside Avenue near Black Oak Drive.

The purported victim, whose name was not disclosed, had called 911. The victim and Schnaidt knew each other, police said.

Schnaidt reportedly poured gasoline on the man from a small plastic water bottle and was “trying to light what appeared to be a lighter and threatened he was going to kill the victim,” police Lt. Ty Lewis said.

The man then discarded some of his gasoline-soaked clothing and ran away from Schnaidt, he told police.

Investigators were unable to locate Schnaidt until May 23, when someone reported seeing him near 24th Street and the railroad tracks in Paso Robles.

Schnaidt was arrested, and the case has been submitted to the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office.

He remained in the San Luis Obispo County Jail as of Tuesday, where he is being held on $505,000 bail, according to the county Sheriff’s Department.

Schnaidt gave a Paso Robles address to officers upon his arrest, but police couldn’t determine whether he was actually living in the city.

Police said they believe he was a transient at one time and possibly still is.

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