Texas Convict Burns Down House to Return to Prison

After spending 26 years in a Texas prison for murdering a guy, Randall Lee Church became a free man in April 2011. As it turns out, however, he didn't care for freedom very much. We can't really blame him.

The San Antonio Express-News reports that Church endured about 96 days on the outside before he realized he couldn't deal with the world, which had changed remarkably since 1983; he also missed his old prison job. So he got some gasoline and some rags and burned down a house, which enabled him to rack up an arson charge and get sent back to prison. Setting the house on fire "was my Fourth of July," he says.

Ann L. Jacobs, director of the Prisoner Reentry Institute at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City, helps to put Church's actions in perspective:

"I don't mean to diminish what this man did ... But when you think about what people come out to, how much the world has changed, what a disadvantage they are at and what little support they generally have, it is kind of a miracle it goes as well as it does for as many people as it does."

At least Church will get health care in prison.

[Express-News. Image via Shutterstock]