FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Bond was set at $10-thousand for the man accused of intentionally setting a fire at his Broward duplex.

Michael Grider appeared in bond court in Fort Lauderdale Sunday charged with first-degree arson.

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Grider was arrested after he allegedly started a fire that destroyed half of his duplex in Wilton Manors on Saturday.

The owner of the duplex, Barclay Garnett, said Girder set the fire after he served him an eviction notice.

“He just had a meltdown,” Garnett said. “He’s very frustrated with the system; not being able to practice law. I think it just really took a toll on him.”

Neighbors said Grider used to be a lawyer in Georgia, but the Georgia bar said he resigned. In the meantime, Grider was said to be trying to pass the Florida bar exam, but things weren’t going well.

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Witnesses said they saw his apartment on fire and then spotted him in his kayak in the water behind the duplex.

When neighbor Robert Jankowski asked him if he knew his house was on fire, Grider replied “yeah.” When the same neighbor asked him if he set it on fire, Grider replied, “yeah.”

The fire caused extensive damage to the side of the duplex Grider lives in.

No one was injured in the blaze, but a neighbor rescued some dogs that were in danger.


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