South Burlington man with molotov cocktail jailed after being denied mental health care

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South Burlington police say a man suffering a mental health crisis and armed with an apparent “molotov cocktail” was jailed Friday after officers were unable to get the man into treatment.

Responding to a call to Patchen Road just before midnight Thursday, police say they encountered Daniel Williams, 33, of South Burlington, who told officers that several people were being held hostage in his nearby apartment. Williams was armed with knives and a molotov cocktail that was later determined to be “benign.”

The incident led police to close Patchen Road and order the evacuation of several apartments. A nearby daycare center was put on lock down.

A search of Williams’ apartment found it empty, but turned up oil and other materials that were likely used to make the explosive device. Police say some of Williams statements were “nonsensical,” suggesting the man was suffering a mental health crisis.

Police say officers tried to get Williams assistance, but he was “refused services because of a reported drug history and lack of formal mental health diagnosis.”

Williams was subsequently arrested and charged with false public alarm and possession of a destructive device. He was jailed after being unabe to post $20,000 bail.

Williams is scheduled to be arraigned Friday.

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