Woman sets fire to Wal-Mart merchandise

A 19-year-old woman is being accused in Anoka County District Court of setting merchandise in a Blaine Wal-Mart store on fire.

Rachael Howard Robinson, of Minneapolis, was arraigned April 2 in Anoka County District Court on two felony arson counts, one in the first degree and another in the second degree.

According to the criminal complaint, Robinson was seen on surveillance footage setting fire to a rack of jeans and an area near bird feed bags. Blaine police were called to the Wal-Mart store on Ulysses Street, west of Highway 65, 12:24 a.m. March 31.

Police were able to apprehend Robinson, who allegedly admitted in a post-Miranda statement to starting the fires to distract people while she and another man she was with attempted to shoplift merchandise.

The criminal complaint did not note any stolen merchandise, but reported the damage was at least $8,600.

Eric Hagen is at eric.hagen@ecm-inc.com

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