Man jailed for setting fire to Niels Bohr Institute

Historic building saved and staff evacuated

A man has been jailed for setting fire to the historic Niels Bohr Institute in the Østerbro district of Copenhagen on May 27.

The man, 25, set fire to the staircase of the institute’s Building K after employees refused to discuss Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity with him. He then fled the scene.

The fire at the institute, founded in 1921, was quickly discovered and put out and everyone was safely evacuated.

“It’s an old five-storey building and the staircase is made of wood, so it could easily have gone terribly wrong,” Kurt Andersen, a spokesperson for the police, told Ekstra Bladet tabloid.

READ MORE: Nobel cause: how Niels Bohr and his accomplice fooled the Nazis on Occupation Day

Mental issues
The man has been sentenced  to serve 27 days at a psychiatric ward. He was observed banging his head on a table at the court while waiting for his case to be called.

The man admitted to setting the fire, contending that he did so to get media coverage and because he had attempted to discuss his theories with the Niels Bohr Institute staff.

His theory revolved around men and women psychologically being able to change their gender, which was somehow connected to the Theory of Relativity, he contended.

But after being continuously rejected by the staff, the man purchased some petrol in a bottle and poured it over the staircase, before setting it alight.





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