Man arrested with gasoline, lighter fluid at New York's St. Patrick's Cathedral days after Notre Dame fire
© Getty images

A man carrying lighters, canisters filled with gasoline and lighter fluid was arrested Wednesday evening at New York City's St. Patrick's Cathedral, police said, according to BuzzFeed News.

The arrest came days after a massive fire engulfed Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.

John Miller, the New York Police Department Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism, told reporters Wednesday that authorities are investigating the motive of the man who was arrested.

ADVERTISEMENT

"It's hard to say exactly what his intentions were but I think the totality of an individual walking into an iconic location carrying over four gallons of gasoline, two bottles of lighter fluid and lighters is something we would have great concern over. We're looking into his background and talking to a couple of other agencies," Miller said.

BuzzFeed News reported that the man parked a van near the cathedral on Wednesday and attempted to bring the canisters, lighter fluid and lighters into the church. He was stopped by a security guard who told him he couldn't enter the church carrying flammable items, according to BuzzFeed News.

The man was then questioned by authorities and gave "inconsistent" answers, Miller told BuzzFeed. 

"His answers were inconsistent and evasive, although he remained conversational with them and cooperative," Miller said.

Monday's massive fire at the Notre Dame Cathedral destroyed much of the cathedral, including its famous spire and some stained-glass windows. But the building was ultimately saved after authorities initially believed the fire would destroy it entirely.