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Police say man refused to get off roof of burning Portsmouth building
Dean Ellis

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — A Rochester man is facing charges after police said he posed as a firefighter and refused to get off the roof a burning building in Portsmouth.

Dean Ellis, 29, was charged with disorderly conduct. Police said that in June, Ellis created a distraction at a fire at the F.A. Gray building on Daniel Street. At the time, the fire chief called it the most serious fire in Portsmouth in recent history.

Investigators said in court documents that Ellis posed as a fire official and even called for a second alarm while standing on the roof of the building without any protective gear.

Firefighters put up a ladder to get him down, but Ellis refused to move, police said.

Later, Ellis was spotted “hot and out of breath” on Daniel Street by a fire official, who noticed a gun tucked in his waistband, police said. That gun was loaded, and police said Ellis didn’t have a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

The disorderly conduct charge and a gun charge are misdemeanors. Ellis’ trial is scheduled for June 17.