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26-Year-Old Woman Arrested for Attempting to Burn Down Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birth Home

A Florida woman who was captured on video casually dousing Martin Luther King Jr.’s birth home in Atlanta with gasoline before allegedly attempting to set it on fire has been identified and charged.

Laneisha Shantrice Henderson, 26, has been charged with attempted arson and interfering with government property after she was seen on camera pouring the flammable liquid out of a large red fuel container and onto the porch of the historic wooden property at around 5:45 p.m. Thursday.

The footage also shows the woman — who was dressed in all-black clothing — dousing plants and emptying the liquid against the windows of the Auburn Avenue house, which is located just blocks from the King Center, King National Historical Park and the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church.

She was stopped in her tracks by two tourists and then apprehended by two off-duty NYPD cops until Atlanta police arrived on the scene and arrested her.

The woman, who is understood to suffer from mental health issues, was transported to Grady Detention Center for evaluation before being transferred to Fulton County Jail, police said.

It is unclear why she intended to burn the building down. She could also face federal charges in connection with the incident, according to Fox 5.

Zachary Eugene Kempf, from Utah, who shot the shocking video and is one of the two tourists who stopped Henderson, said he was in Atlanta for work reasons when he decided to visit the house. He began recording this footage as he noticed the woman pouring gasoline around the house.

“She seemed a little irritated and on edge,” Kempf told Fox 5.

Kempf said that when Henderson came down the porch steps, he told her to stop, and he then blocked her repeated attempts to go back up.

“She was never violent or aggressive with me, but she kept trying to get past, and I kept blocking her,” he told Storyful.

Kempf said Henderson never responded when he asked her what she was doing.

Henderson then threw the empty canister into the bushes and grabbed a lighter that she had left in the grass next to the porch, Kempf told The New York Times. He then called 911.

Kempf then yelled at two men down the street for help. They happened to be two off-duty NYPD officers, and they then apprehended Henderson until Atlanta Police officers arrived at the scene. The NYPD cops were in town to visit the landmark.

The video also shows one of the NYPD cops holding Henderson down on the ground with her hands behind her back. She is then escorted away by Atlanta police looking glum and not saying anything.

Kempf said that Henderson’s family also arrived on the scene and said they had been looking for her, according to the Times. Her relatives described her as a veteran who was experiencing mental distress.

Atlanta Fire Department Battalion Chief Jerry DeBerry told reporters that, after the fuel was poured, the home could have caught fire in a matter of seconds. The fire department’s HAZMAT team worked to clean up the gasoline on the property.

A Chevrolet sedan, believed to be the woman’s car, was also seized by police.

The home is currently under renovation and closed to visitors until 2025.

King’s birth home, a framed two-story Queen Anne-style structure, was built in 1895 and played a vital role in commemorating the early life of the civil rights leader and his siblings.

READ 12 COMMENTS
  • Russian says:

    No building worth discomfort of pretty lady. And that guy touching her inappropriately. I see on the video that racist pervert enjoying of harassing her (he dare to smile).
    And those interrupting should better not getting involved. And video of burning building would be more funny (however, nobody were interrupting when mad monkeys were burning MANY BUILDINGS in summer of 2020 and none of them were prosecuted). So, what the difference?
    I hope girl will be acquitted.

  • CECIL CLEMENTS JR says:

    Now sentence her to the maximum possible sentence upon her conviction

  • Wyatt Earp says:

    Who put her up to this? Oh, wait! She BLACK! Now let see what those FAR LEFT MEDIA GOING TO SAY! Oh, yeah! They going to blame it on White SUPREMACY! But she more a MARXIST AND BLM TERRORISTS!

  • Janet Woods says:

    OK I got two comments here. 1. She must be a white supremecist. Wait. Is she black? It doesn’t matter. and 2. The NYPD officer is trying to George Floyd her. You can see it on film. He’s trying to kill her. Throw him in prison with Derrek Chauven. He’s obviously a killer. Only kidding! Looking at it from a Leftist point of view.

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