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Police: Greensburg man doused self with gasoline

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Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

A Greensburg man is accused of dousing himself with gasoline inside his home and rushing a city policeman while holding a lit cigarette.

Jacob Francis Columbin, 26, of 120 N. Lincoln Ave. is charged with aggravated assault, recklessly endangering another person, resisting arrest, attempted arson and risking a catastrophe.

Columbin walked up gasoline-soaked basement stairs toward Patrolman Peter Sandberg about 1:45 p.m. Dec. 31, according to court papers filed in Greensburg District Judge James Albert's office. Columbin was holding a lit cigarette at the time, which police twice ordered him to put out.

“He then stated (an expletive) and charged at this officer, requiring me to take him to the ground,” Sandberg wrote in an affidavit. “Jacob continued to fight, requiring four officers to control him.”

No one was injured, police said.

Officers didn't taser Columbin because of concerns of igniting the spilled gasoline.

Police went to the home after a caller requested help and then hung up.

Columbin had been pouring gasoline inside the house and was attempting to light it, his cousin told police.

Sandberg said he could smell “a strong odor” of gasoline when he was outside the home.

Columbin was taken to a hospital for evaluation, police said. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.

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