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HCSO deputies arrest man accused of threatening to set fire to local hospital

The sheriff's office said Glenn Schaeffer admitted to planning on igniting a liquid at St. Joseph's Hospital-South.

GIBSONTON, Fla. — A Gibsonton man is behind bars after Hillsborough County deputies said he allegedly had plans to burn down a local hospital for revenge.

At around 11:41 p.m. on Monday night, deputies learned that 56-year-old Glenn Schaeffer left his house dressed in camo, possibly armed with a pipe bomb or Molotov cocktails, the sheriff's office said in a news release.

Patrol units found Schaeffer driving near U.S. Highway 41 South and Pennsylvania Avenue and attempted to conduct a felony stop, but he refused to get out of the car and fled from deputies, according to authorities. Deputies were able to catch up with the 56-year-old man at his home near Tangle Branch Lane and Southern Creek Drive in Gibsonton and take him into custody. 

He was then arrested without incident, the sheriff's office reports. 

Deputies conducted a search of Schaeffer's car and found "two firearms, hundreds of rounds of ammunition and bottles with an unknown liquid."

That's when the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office bomb team responded to the home to investigate the liquid and bottles. After investigating, detectives said the liquid did not ignite and no criminal violation was committed, the sheriff's office reports. However, the agency said Schaeffer did admit to detectives "that he was upset" and planned "on igniting the liquid at St. Joseph's Hospital-South."

"He also said the guns were for hospital security guards and anyone else that would pose a threat to him," the sheriff's office said in a news release. "He wanted to get the attention of the FBI."

St. Joseph's Hospital-South released a statement following Schaeffer's arrest.

"St. Joseph’s Hospital-South is grateful to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office for quickly responding to this situation. Our top priority is the safety of our patients and team members, and the actions of deputies ensured a peaceful night for our team and all we serve."

Chronister said in a statement that a family member reported Schaeffer's "threatening behavior."

Schaeffer faces two charges of felony feeling to elude and possession of a destructive device with intent to harm, records show. His bond is set at $9,500.

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