Acting on a dare, a drunk Harvard Law School grad allegedly set fire to a chapel yesterday that houses the remains of unidentified victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The perp — identified as 26-year-old Brian Schroeder — broke into Memorial Park near the corner of First Avenue and East 30th Street and set the blaze at around 9 am. The fire did not get to the remains, which are kept in climate-controlled containers awaiting advances in DNA technology that might allow them to be identified, but notes, photos, flowers, and other mementos inside the white-tented sanctuary were either stolen or burned. Schroeder turned himself in to police last night.
The facility is typically closed to everyone except for the families of 9/11 victims, so it's unclear exactly how the suspect even got into the shrine. One of Schroeder's relatives said the suspect — who moved to New York to pursue a job with a law firm — didn't set the blaze because of political motives. "With all my experiences with [him], he didn't have any radical agenda. Nothing but a good person," the source told the Post. "It's clearly out of his character and I'm sure he feels for the victims' families."