Michael Mambrino, 18, of Brookline, was arrested on February 8 in connection with starting the two-alarm fire that gutted a vacant warehouse at 69 Norman St. during the late evening hours of January 23.
According to the Everett Police Department, Mambrino is charged with one count of burning a building and one count of causing injury to a firefighter. The arrest was made based on an examination of the scene, witness statements, surveillance footage and physical evidence. Under state law, Mambrino, if convicted, could face up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $1,000. Mambrino, who is being held without bail, is also charged with starting a fire at a vacant home in Brookline on January 25.
The Everett warehouse had been empty for the past year and a half and was slated for demolition to make way for Artemas, a 398-unit apartment building. In June 2021, the property was purchased for $18 million by Lennar Multifamily Communities, a property management company in Charlotte, North Carolina.
“If anybody was in the building, there’s nothing that could’ve been done. The building was fully involved,” said Deputy Fire Chief Lawrence Cardinale following the blaze. “It had a lot of void spaces. It was very difficult to get the water on certain parts of the building. It was just an old, very old building and it had the big timber which probably had a lot of either, like, oil or other type of substance that was just embedded in all the wood.”
A state HAZMAT team was called in as fire crews were concerned about burning chemicals.
Firefighters also saw that flames had spread to a neighboring parking garage and a telephone pole, causing a transformer to explode. Therefore, National Grid temporarily shut off power to the surrounding area.