Man charged with setting fire at Bradenton post office

MANATEE — A 51-year-old man was arrested after a witness saw him start a fire in a mail receptacle at the U.S. Post Office on 75th Street in Bradenton, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

Rafiaele Mazzucco told investigators he lighted a piece of paper with a lighter and tossed it through a mail slot inside the post office, 115 75th St. W., about 5:10 p.m. Wednesday because he was upset that his mail had been opened, according to a news release.

A witness who saw Mazzucco alerted postal employees and the fire was extinguished before it damaged any mail or the building, according to the sheriff's office.

The witness wrote down Mazzucco's license plate number, and deputies were able to track him down at his nearby apartment. Witnesses identified Mazzucco and he was arrested on charges of arson, resisting arrest and possession of drug paraphernalia, the report said.

"Mazzucco couldn’t understand how he committed a crime because the fire was put out before any damage was done," the news release states.

The incident was also captured by a post office security camera, according to the sheriff's office.

Mazzucco was being held without bond at the Manatee County jail.