TROY, Mo. – A 37-year-old Lake St. Louis man is accused of going on a bizarre rampage with fire extinguishers over the weekend at Mercy Lincoln Hospital in Troy, Missouri.
According to prosecutors, the incident took place around 6 p.m. Sunday. Authorities believe Michael Mouser got into the hospital stairwell, set off fire alarms, started spraying fire extinguishers, and even sprayed a visitor in the face.
Mouser remained in jail Wednesday on charges of first-degree terror threat and second-degree burglary, both felonies, plus misdemeanor charges of stealing and property damage.
His bond was set at $20,000 cash-only.
Mouser roamed hospital stairwells and corridors on a rampage that ended up spilling into a nearby neighborhood.
Police found two spent extinguishers near a hospital exit. With alarms blaring, first responders searched for a fire and a possible intruder. The hospital went on lockdown as more than 40 visitors, staff, and patients were evacuated outside.
No one was hurt, though Mouser allegedly attacked a hospital visitor after scaring a child by banging on a waiting room window.
“The visitor went out to try to contact him and ask him if there was something he could do to help him out and he sprayed him in the face with a fire extinguisher,” said Detective Tony Stewart, Troy Police Department.
“At Mercy, we prepare for emergencies like this, from fire to tornado, natural events to even intruders,” said Mercy-Lincoln Administrator Tony Rothermich. “At times it feels monotonous to go through those training exercises but when something like this happens, people reacted in an appropriate manner. Luckily, no one else was hurt. That’s the thing I’m thankful for. No one got hurt.”
Mouser sprang up from behind a car as officers searched the garage of a nearby house responding to a trespassing call, police said. He was holding a stethoscope and a table leg, among other items.
“It was dark in the garage. He had a verified table leg he took from the basement of the residence. He was yelling and growling and started to charge our officers,” Steward said.
Mouser finally surrendered when officers drew their weapons and ordered him to drop the table leg, Steward said.
A court document said Mouser told police he’d just been released from jail after a drug arrest and created the disturbance because he wanted to go back.