An Amery, WI man is facing felony arson charges after setting a pickup truck on fire outside of Wanderoos Bar in Amery, WI.

Joshua Handrahan, of Amery, WI, is facing multiple felony charges following on incident in which he is charged with arson for setting someone else’s vehicle on fire, endangering safety, and criminal damage to property.

According to a probable cause report from the Polk County Sheriff’s Department, on August 19, 2018, law enforcement responded along with the fire department to a report of a vehicle on fire in the parking lot of Wanderoos Bar in Amery, WI.

When officers arrived at the scene, they saw a vehicle fully engulfed in flames, and because the truck was so close to the building, the siding on the building was melting. Renters of the building were asleep inside.

Investigating officers reviewed security camera footage and saw a man intentionally setting the vehicle on fire. Employees of Wanderoos identified the man in the security video as Handrahan.

The probable cause report states that in the security footage, Handrahan can be seen arriving at the bar on an ATV and staying until just before closing time. After the bartender leaves the bar, Handrahan can be seen getting out of the bed of a pickup truck (not belonging to him) and meeting up with a few other people who arrive in the parking lot. Those people leave, and then the security video shows Handrahan removing items from the bed of the truck and spending some time under the truck with some type of rope.

Eventually the security video shows Handrahan throwing a flaming ball at the ground directly underneath the truck. The flames start to die down, and then Handrahan approaches the flames and moves some items on the ground, creating a slightly larger fire.

Handrahan then moves to the other side of the truck, out of the view of the security camera, and a bit later, the pickup truck starts to catch fire underneath. The security camera footage then shows Handrahan running from the fire and leaving on his ATV.

After Handrahan leaves, the security footage show the truck roll backward, stopping when it hits a golf bag that Handrahan had thrown out of the truck bed earlier. According to the probable cause report, the golf bag likely prevented the truck from rolling directly into the building; upon which it could have caught the entire building on fire instead of just melting the siding; endangering the people who were sleeping inside the building.

On August 21, 2018, investigating officers made contact with Handrahan, who admitted that he was at Wanderoos Bar on the night of the fire, but initially denied setting the fire. Handrahan later told officers that he had consumed several beers and remembered being the last customer out of the bar. Handrahan went on to admit that he remembered finding a styrofoam cup and some rags, which he set on fire and threw at the truck.

Handrahan was placed under arrest. Online circuit court records show that on August 22, 2018, Handrahan appeared in Polk County Circuit Court for a hearing at which time the Court placed him on a $10,000 signature bond with conditions that he have no contact with the Wanderoos Bar, be in complete compliance with mental health regimen, attend all appointments, and take all prescriptions as prescribed. In addition, the Court ordered that Handrahan is not to consume or possess any alcohol, and he is subject to testing to determine compliance.

Charges were filed against Handrahan on August 23, 2018 of Class I Felony Arson of Property Other Than Building, Class C Felony Attempted Arson of Building Without Owner’s Consent, 2 counts of Class I Felony Criminal Damage to Property (over $2,500), and 2 counts of Class F Felony 1st-Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety.

In a separate case filed against Handrahan in Polk County Circuit Court on August 21, 2018, he is also facing charges of Misdemeanor Domestic Battery and Misdemeanor Domestic Disorderly Conduct. Details of that case are not known to at this time.

Handrahan is due to appear again in September in Polk County Circuit Court regarding all of his criminal charges.

Pursuant to the direction of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, as found in Supreme Court Rule 20:3.6, Trial Publicly, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Last Update: Aug 28, 2018 11:42 am CDT

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Crime & Court

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