Guy Who Set Fire to Nuclear Submarine and Caused $400M in Damage Has a Great Explanation

By 07.24.12

Fury set fire to the USS Miami in Kittery, Maine, where he was working as a sandblaster, because he wanted to leave work early. Seriously. That was his end-game.

Fury, who initially denied involvement in either incident, finally told investigators he was responsible for both fires after submitting to a polygraph test, and blamed his anxiety and a conversation with his ex-girlfriend for making him snap.

The first fire was set on May 23 around 5:30 p.m. while the submarine was in dry dock at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. The blaze raged for 12 hours until firefighters were able to put it out, and the Navy estimated it caused $400 million dollars in damage.

Less than a month later, on June 16, another fire started in the dry dock crade of the submarine. This time the flames were quickly extinguished and “little or no damage” was caused, according to the complaint.

Fury gave two sworn statements that he had simply been a witness to both fires, but when interviewed by investigators again on July 18, he admitted having set the June 16 fire.

He claims it was a heated text-message exchange that, uh, fanned the flames.

In the wake of this conversation with his former girlfriend, Fury said his “mind was racing” by 6:30 p.m., so he stuffed a bag of alcohol wipes in a corner of the submarine and lit it on fire.


Fury faces life in prison if convicted of the arson. Not that he should worry about it, though, what with this amazing defense and all.


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