Arson suspect says voices sent him to church tower - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Arson suspect says voices sent him to church tower

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

We are learning more about the man police say torched a Burlington church Wednesday.

Police arrested Aliaksandr Bychkou, 32, of South Burlington, as he was leaving the scene. He was carrying a duffle bag filled with matches. He pleaded not guilty to arson and burglary charges. Bychkou is not a U.S. citizen; he's from Belarus and has been living in Vermont since 2011 with his wife and child.

Bychkou told police he was suffering from panic attacks and heard voices telling him to visit a church in Burlington, access its bell tower and search for treasure. Police say he broke into the church by climbing through a window, but he told police he could not remember how the fire started.

Fire officials say they found evidence of an accelerant on Bychkou's gloves.

The arson remains under investigation.

A judge ordered Bychkou to undergo a competency and sanity evaluation.

Related Story:

Arson suspect arrested in Burlington church fire

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