Man set 3 fires inside Ocala hospital, police say

No injuries reported at HCA Florida West Marion Hospital

OCALA, Fla. – A man was arrested Sunday on allegations of starting three fires inside an Ocala hospital and two other fires nearby.

Daniel Holmes, 32, was arrested on charges of arson of a hospital, arson of a dwelling, arson of a wooded area and battery on emergency medical personnel.

Ocala police said three fires were intentionally set Sunday evening at HCA Florida West Marion Hospital.

Ocala Fire Rescue responds to three fires set at hospital. (Ocala Fire Rescue)

Fire crews received a call about a fire at the hospital around 7:10 p.m. While on the way to the scene, a call about a second fire came in, according to fire rescue officials.

Firefighters said there were three fires in the building: at a coffee station, a men’s restroom and a women’s restroom.

Two other fires were reported outside the hospital, one behind Rasmussen University and another behind a home.

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No injuries were reported.

A person matching the description of the culprit was found a short time after the fires were set. The man, identified by police as Holmes, was arrested and taken to jail.

“Great job to all the officers and fire rescue who swiftly responded to the scene, especially to Detective Rodriguez for his investigation and to Officer Russo for his vigilance and prompt action that led to the quick apprehension of the suspect,” police said in a statement.

The fires did not impact the hospital’s operations.

Holmes was taken into custody and is held on bond of $65,000.

Daniel Holmes. (Copyright 2023 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

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Daniel started with WKMG-TV in 2000 and became the digital content manager in 2009. When he's not working on, Daniel likes to head to the beach or find a sporting event nearby.

Brenda Argueta is a digital journalist who joined in March 2021. She graduated from UCF and returned to Central Florida after working in Colorado.