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Ivy League Law Grad Torches 9/11 Chapel

Memorial Park
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Memorial Park

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."

The bodies will eventually be moved to the World Trade Center Memorial, which is scheduled to be completed by Sept. 11, 2011 — that is, if it isn't delayed again.

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