Man held without bail in strip mall arson

By News Staff 

A Providence man accused of setting a strip mall on fire earlier this month was held without bail Wednesday at his arraignment.

51-year-old William Roberts admitted to arson investigators that he started the fire that burned down the strip mall on Reservoir Avenue.

Roberts confessed to setting a toilet paper roll on fire and placing it in a cardboard box in front of the mall. He is charged with first degree arson.

Several of the businesses were heavily damaged and three stores will not be able to reopen.

What’s left of the mall is scheduled to be knocked down within the next couple weeks, according to the Providence Arson Squad.

Roberts is due back in court on November 10.

© WLNE-TV 2015