Fire & Rescue
La Crosse man arrested for starting home on fire — killing a dog — pointing gun at victim
A dead dog, another had to be resuscitated, a battery victim who had a gun pointed at them and a house intentionally set on fire.
That was the scene on the 2000 block of Onalaska Court Wednesday, beginning about 1:15 a.m. when the fire department got a call for a house on fire. They fought the fire until about 5 a.m., while investigators were there past 11 a.m.
A La Crosse man was arrested at some point, for allegedly starting the fire.
Not only was Brandon Helke arrested for arson inside the home, but the 29-year-old also faces a slew of other charges, including from pointing a gun at another person in the house.
Police are calling it a domestic incident. The victim who had the gun pointed at them was able to leave. It was some time after that, Helke started the home on fire, according to police.
The other charges Helke faces include battery, intimidating a victim, mistreating animals (two counts), disorderly conduct while armed and felony bail jumping.
Two dogs were in the house at the time of the fire and one died. The other was resuscitated and turned over to animal control.