Officials in Norwich have charged an "Extreme Makeover" volunteer and owner of a wood stove and pellet fuel company with setting his business on fire.
Police have charged Bruce “Bruno” Hayn, 54, of Colchester, with several violations in connection with a fire at Shur Fire, 340 West Thames St. in Norwich, on Oct. 27.
Hayn is also the vice chairman of the Colchester board of finance.
“I was shocked and saddened to learn of the arrest of Mr. Hayn. Bruce has made numerous contributions to this community over the last twenty years and is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty,” First Selectman Gregg Schuster said in a statement. “I’m sure Mr. Hayn will be considering if he should continue serving on the Board of Finance. I hope he will make a decision that is in the best interest of the community.”
The fire caused heavy damage to the building and Bruce “Bruno” Hayn, 54, of Colchester, filed insurance claims for several hundred thousand dollars in damages cause by fire, police said. His insurance company, The Travelers, made initial good faith payments, police said.
Investigators looked into the fire and determined that it had been set, police said. They charged Hayn on Monday with criminal attempt at arson in the first degree, arson in the first degree, insurance fraud and false statement in the second degree.
Hayn was also part of a team that came together to rebuild the Girard family home in Voluntown, according to the Day of New London.
He also helped rebuild the Landa family home in Griswold after it was destroyed by fire.
"We accomplished what the family, in their minds, had always dreamed about," Hayns told NBC Connecticut at the time. "They haven't had a lot of dreams fulfilled lately, so fulfilling one of those dreams is probably one of the most important things we could have done.
Hayn was released on a $100,000 surety bond set by the court, and will be arraigned on Jan. 26. No additional arrests are anticipated.