Norfolk man accused of trespassing, lighting woman’s house on fire

NORFOLK, Neb. – A Norfolk man is accused of trying to light a woman’s house on fire Sunday morning.

At approximately 7:30 a.m., officers were called to a residence in the 300 block of W. Bluff Avenue. The caller told authorities that she woke up to yelling and banging on her patio door around 5:45 a.m. Upon waking up, she said, she saw two men on her patio.

After threatening to call the police, she said the she believed the subjects left the area. However, the two men allegedly returned an hour later and were in her yard yelling.

The caller said she then threatened calling authorities once more, leading them to walk away again.

A short time later, she said, she went to leave the residence and saw the side of her house was on fire. She used a garden hose and was able to extinguish the fire.

Shortly before she called authorities at 7:30 a.m., she noticed 27-year-old Tyler O. Robertson inside her vehicle with his feet on the dash.

Responding officers made contact with Robertson, noting that he was apparently under the influence of alcohol. Officers arrested Robertson for second-degree trespassing. The reporter identified Robertson as one of the two men that had been at her home earlier that morning.

Officers said Robertson was in possession of cigarettes, and several cigarette butts were recovered from the area adjacent to where the fire was started.

During the arson investigation, officers located additional evidence that an accelerant was used to start the fire, in addition to other evidence they say linked Robertson to the fire, though they did not release further specifics.

Robertson was also arrested for first-degree arson. He was housed in the Norfolk City Jail and later transferred to the Madison County Jail.