Security guard accused of starting fires, phoning in bomb threat at Cottonwood Heights office park

Cottonwood Corporate Center.jpg
Posted at 12:30 PM, Mar 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-28 14:41:21-04

COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah — A security guard hired to protect a Cottonwood Heights office park was arrested after allegedly starting fires and phoning in a bomb threat where she worked.

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Brittany Marie Burson, 22, faces multiple charges of aggravated arson after being accused of starting numerous fires over a month-long period at the Cottonwood Corporate Center, as well as a threat of terrorism charge for making up a bomb threat.

The arrest documents show that law enforcement officials were first called to the office park on March 2 after Burson claimed to have received a call on a private security phone from an "unidentified male" who told her there was a bomb in one of the buildings. Burson said the person on the phone told her to evacuate the building before "abruptly ending the phone call."

After all the buildings at the Cottonwood Corporate Center were evacuated, a bomb squad made a sweep of the office park and found no explosive device.

Police were called back to the same facility on three separate times, March 11, March 17 and March 18, after four small fires were found inside bathroom garbage cans. On March 17, Burson said she found an additional fire after authorities responded to an initial call of a fire on the building's ground floor. Each of the fires were put out and minimal damage was reported.

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Property management staff was unable to review camera footage of the incidents due to equipment being nonoperational, according to the probable cause affidavit.

On Wednesday, investigators learned the number that called in the original bomb threat belonged to Burson, who gave the number as her contact information when hired.

During an interview with detectives, Burson "placed herself at the scene of each fire that occurred" at the office park. She later confessed to making the bomb threat, but did not admit to the fires before requesting an attorney.

Burson was taken into custody on Friday and taken to the Salt Lake County Jail.