Richard N. Mojica Jr., 18, of the 10300 Block of Swift Stream Place, was charged with 16 counts related to a number of fires throughout Columbia, including the Thursday morning fire in a at the Mall in Columbia, police said.
Mojica was charged Sunday with seven counts of arson, eight counts of malicious burning and one count of reckless endangerment, according to court records.
Police said Mojica caused an estimated $400,000 in damages and property loss. Mojica was arrested on Sunday morning after police and fire officials saw him running from a dumpster where a fire had been set near Lord and Taylor at the Mall in Columbia, according to police.
Police charged Mojica in relation to the following incidents, according to police and charging documents filed at District Court:
- An April 19 paper fire set in a stairwell in the 10300 block of Swift Stream.
- Two April 30 fires set in dumpsters in the 10400 block of Swift Stream Place. One fire was started outside an unoccupied building, causing more than $5,000 in estimated damage to its exterior. The second fire was inside the unoccupied building, but was contained in the dumpster.
- A May 1 fire set in a trashcan near the Howard Hughes Building in the 10200 block of Little Patuxent Parkway.
- A May 1 fire set in a recycling container in the 10400 block of Swift Stream Place.
- A May 1 fire set underneath the loading dock near Sears at the Mall in Columbia, 10300 block of Little Patuxent Parkway
- A May 3 fire also set at the loading dock at Sears at the Mall in Columbia resulting in an estimated $30,000 in damage to the trailer and its contents at the 10300 block of Little Patuxent Parkway.
Mojica is being held on a $500,000 bond at the Howard County Detention Center. He is scheduled to appear at District Court on June 5.