- Associated Press - Monday, April 6, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Authorities are holding someone suspected of starting a fire at a hotel near the Lincoln airport.

The Lincoln Police Department says 33-year-old Joshua Berney, of Thornton, Colorado, reported the blaze from his room at the Holiday Inn Express just before 4 a.m. Monday. He was taken to a hospital to be checked for smoke inhalation and was later jailed on suspicion of committing first-degree arson.

Fire sprinklers helped contain the flames to just one hotel room on the second floor, but smoke escaped into hallways. Thirty-five hotel guests were evacuated during the fire.

Investigator Chuck Schweitzer says bedding, a pillow and some of Berney’s personal belongings were ignited.

Police Capt. Bob Farber says investigators have concluded that the fire was intentionally set. The blaze caused at least $150,000 in damage.

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