Additional charges filed against accused arsonist who set fire to two homes within days, leading to SWAT standoff, authorities say

SPRING, Texas – Additional charges have been filed against a man accused of setting two homes on fire within days before surrendering to authorities on Thursday evening.

The arsonist suspect, Pablo Patino, 28, has been charged with arson of habitation, aggravated family assault, violation of protection order enhanced, terroristic threats against police officers. Additional charges of arson are pending the outcome the Harris County Fire Marshal’s investigation.

A SWAT team was called to a home, located in the 3200 block of Lotus Blossom, in Spring where Patino was barricaded inside.

Patino was wanted in another fire that was reported at his estranged wife’s parents’ home and domestic assault two days prior. That case was already under investigation by the Harris County Sheriff’s Office and Fire Marshal’s Office.

Pablo Patino, 28. (Constable Mark Herman’s Office)

Around 3:30 p.m. Thursday, the wife had constables escort her to the home she shared with Patino to pick up some of her belongings, officials said.

Patino was there waiting for her, and when he saw law enforcement, he ran inside the house and barricaded himself. Patino had guns in his possession and threatened to harm anyone who came close.

More law enforcement agencies, including SWAT negotiators, were called for assistance and an hourslong standoff began.

First, smoke was seen billowing from the home and the smell of tear gas filled the air. A short time later, flames were seen shooting through the roof.

Sheriff Gonzalez says the fire was initiated by the suspect, who later emerged from the second floor of the residence.

Patino could be seen climbing out of a window as flames continued to engulf the home, and as the internal structure started to crumble.

A growing crowd of concerned neighbors began to clap as Patino surrendered.

Firefighters continued diligently working to not only extinguish the flames at Patino’s home but also spray water on neighboring homes for protection.

Patino was seen evaluated by emergency medical crews at the scene, then taken into custody, bringing Thursday’s chaos to a close. Once he is released from the hospital, he will be booked into the Harris County Jail.

SEE ALSO: Man hits estranged wife with vehicle after setting fire to northwest Harris County home, authorities say

House set on fire, woman hit by car

How it all began

On Tuesday, Patino went to his in-laws’ home in the 11400 block of Mortimer, where his estranged wife was staying.

It was 3:30 a.m. when he intentionally set the fire in order to lure his wife outside, where he was waiting inside a vehicle, officials said.

The family dogs alerted the wife’s family to the fire.

When the wife evacuated the burning home, Patino allegedly struck her with his vehicle.

The victim’s 23-year-old brother, Logan Saldana, was attempting to put out the flames with a fire extinguisher when he heard his sister screaming.

“I heard her say, ‘What’s going on?’ and he drove off,” Saldana said. “I heard the car screech off, do a doughnut and he came and hit her with the car and drove off.”

Patino abandoned the car a few blocks away.

The Harris County District Attorney’s Office accepted arson of habitation, violation of protective order, and aggravated assault charges in that case, the fire marshal’s office said.

Patino remained on the run until Thursday when the SWAT situation unfolded.

“There’s no inkling of any of this when you’re having your normal neighborly interactions with these people?” reporter, Joel Eisenbaum asked a neighbor next to the family’s burnt home.

“No, not at all. Nope, nope. Very nice. People quiet. Yep,” Roxanne Ericson said.

More trouble

Deputies say Patino had previously been arrested for a domestic violence incident and had posted a $5,000 bond on Dec. 26 before these situations ensued.

About the Authors:

Moriah Ballard joined the KPRC 2 digital team in the fall of 2021. Prior to becoming a digital content producer in Southeast Texas and a Houstonian, Moriah was an award-winning radio host in her hometown of Lorain, Ohio and previously worked as a producer/content creator in Cleveland. Her faith, family, and community are her top passions.