Investigators said he was high on synthetic mushrooms when the fire broke out

ODESSA, Texas (KMID/KPEJ)- A man was arrested earlier this week after police said he took drugs and then started a fire in his room at a local motel. He has also been accused of spitting on fire investigators. Christopher Lee Pinera, 26, has been charged with Arson, Harassment of a Public Servant, and Public Intoxication.

According to an affidavit, on July 5, Odessa Fire Rescue responded to a fire at Imperial Motel on W 2nd Street. There, firefighters found smoke pouring out of a unit that had been rented to Pinera. Once the fire was out, fire investigators found a burn mark in the bedroom as well as burned paper in the bathroom trashcan and the bathtub. They also found the bathtub full of water and fire extinguisher powder throughout the room.

The motel owner stated the occupants in the room next to Pinera’s unit saw him leave just as they started to smell smoke. They reportedly asked Pinera if something was burning and he told them “don’t worry, everything is in the bathtub”. That is when motel staff called 911.

While crews were on the scene, Pinera arrived carrying several bags of groceries. They asked him what happened, and he said he was asleep when the fire started “cause of magic”. He said the magical fire woke him and that once awake, he left to buy groceries because everything was “ok”.

When investigators moved to place Pinera in handcuffs, he reportedly spit on a Fire Captain and refused to give his name. That is when OFR called Odessa Police for backup.

By the time an OPD officer arrived, Pinera was on the ground in handcuffs. The officer stated Pinera was “sweating profusely” and saying things that didn’t make any sense. Inside the motel room, officers found an empty package of synthetic mushrooms and officers said he was intoxicated when he started the fire.

Pinera was taken to the Ector County Law Enforcement Center where he remained as of Thursday afternoon. His bond has been set at a combined $55,312.