By CBS Baltimore Staff

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WJZ) — A Pennsylvania man was arrested after allegedly setting fire to several wreaths laid at a Hagerstown cemetery overnight, the State Fire Marshal’s Office said.

Troopers from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office responded around 1 a.m. on Friday to the Cedar Lawn Memorial Park, where witnesses reported seeing a man standing by a fire. There, they found 43-year-old Peter Custer, of Harrisburg.

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Officials said Custer took plastic wreaths from at least three burial plots and set them alight on an access road. During his arrest, officials said Custer claimed he was “trying to save the earth” and that “plastic wreaths were non-biodegradable.”

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“This desecration at Cedar Lawn Memorial Park is morally wrong. Disturbing final resting places is contemptible, criminal and will not be tolerated,” State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci said.

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Geraci was held in a local detention center before he was released on his own recognizance.

CBS Baltimore Staff