Nov 13, 2008

Local Arsonist Mounts Freedom of Speech Defense to Fight Charges

Dayton, OH - Frank Peters, 38, is not the first man to be suspected of, and later admit to, multiple arson charges. He is, however, the first to claim that his work is art and thus should be protected under his first amendment rights.

"I consider myself an artist," said Peters to reporters outside the courtroom. "I use fire as a medium for me to communicate and really express myself. It sends a clear and unambiguous message to all who view it. And that message is: no."

Arson or art?
Seeing as the remnants of his art are still smoldering around the city, this unprecedented legal defense has a few people up in arms. Not least of which is District Attorney Susan Guarez.

"I had [Frank] confessing to taking a job from a known mob boss to kill his wife in a house fire," Susan recalls. "And later, he recants saying instead that his 'business associate' had 'commissioned' him to do an 'art piece' in which his wife was to 'participate in'. He used air quotes and everything when he said it, too!"

"I wouldn't even be so upset if this wasn't crazy enough to work," Susan added after a moment of reflection.

No word yet on a verdict, as the jury deliberating for the past 2 days.

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