Sparta man arrested for setting liquor store fire

SPARTA, Wis. — A Sparta man faces charges after he allegedly set fire to a convenience store after they refused to sell him alcohol.

38-year-old Bradford White was arrested early Saturday morning for allegedly breaking into Fast Eddie’s Discount Liquor in Sparta, stealing some items and starting the fire.

Fast Eddie’s owner Ed Habhegger tells News 8 he refused to sell to White because he was so intoxicted he could barely walk.

White allegedly returned around 2:00 a.m., drove his car into the front door and then doused the convience store with alcohol and lighter fluid.


The whole scene was caught on the store’s surveillance cameras.

“(White was) dumping tequila and lighter fluid and (the store) burnt quick, but nothing was destroyed in the warehouse…that’s where we have most of the stuff,” Habhegger says. “Everything is fine here, but there’s smoke damage, so we don’t know what is going to happen.”

Monroe County Sheriff Pete Quirin says White was arrested earlier for trying to steal alcohol from another business in Sparta. White was held in the Monroe County Jail, but was released to a responsible party, Quirin says.

White faces charges of arson, burglary, criminal damage to property and theft.

Habhegger says the damage to his store is especially hard to stomach with Christmas just around the corner.

“It really hurts because this is a family-owned business, and I’ve been doing it all my life,” Habhegger says. “I love being around the people, ‘b-s-ing’ the people all the time, and it is just a wonderful wonderful opporunity in life to have your entire family with ya.”


SPARTA, Wis. —  A man is arrested after allegedly burglarizing a Sparta business and then setting it on fire.

It happened around 1:30 a.m. Saturday morning at Fast Eddies Discount Liquor Store. That’s located at 9860 State Highway 21.

Authorities say the suspect broke into the store, stole items and then set it on fire.

An adult male was arrested but authorities have not released his name yet.

The incident remains under investigation by the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department and the State Fire Marshal’s Office.