Disgruntled employee charged with lighting Menomonee Falls body shop on fire

NOW: Disgruntled employee charged with lighting Menomonee Falls body shop on fire

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. (CBS 58) -- A disgruntled former employee is accused of lighting a Menomonee Falls body shop on fire. 

Menomonee Falls police were called to Maaco Collision Repair and Auto Painting on Silver Spring Road around 5:45 a.m. on Oct. 11. 

The body shop's manager said 12 cars were damaged during the fire and the roof of the building caved in. 

Tuesday, Oct. 15 employees worked to clear out some of the damaged cars in their lot across the street.


The shop’s manager says the business is closed until at least 2020, leaving 11 employees without a job.

Anthony Gilbertson, 32, is charged with breaking into the building and setting the fire.

Court documents say the shop’s manager entered the building after the fire and “observed paperwork strewn about the office area, computers knocked onto the floor, and desk drawers left ajar.”

Court records say Gilbertson used to work at Maaco, but was fired in July for “driving customer vehicles off the lot without consent and after business hours.”

Police said the building’s security cameras show Gilbertson “spraying an unknown substance from an aerosol can on desks chairs and paperwork in the lobby area,” and lighting them on fire. Then police say Gilbertson headed into shop room and used a paint additive chemical canister to start more fires.

No one was hurt.

Police have not released the surveillance video.

Gilbertson was arrested October 12 in Milwaukee. He is scheduled to be back in court Oct. 23 for his preliminary hearing.

If convicted, he could face up to 52 and a half years in prison.

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