Seven men were arrested in Louisiana this week, accused of burning down a historic plantation house where authorities say they were smoking marijuana and looking for ghosts.
The men were charged with various crimes, including arson, burglary and trespassing.
They are accused of destroying the LeBeau Plantation House, a structure built in the 1850s in Arabi, La. The house was considered the largest pre-Civil War mansion still standing in the New Orleans area, according to local media reports.
The house was reportedly built on an indigo plantation, was later used as a hotel and casino and then was left vacant for its last 30 years. Local lore said that the house was haunted. Law enforcement told reporters that trespassing was a regular problem.
Authorities said that the men arrested were smoking marijuana and drinking on the site.
“They had been looking for ghosts, trying to summon spirits beating on the floors,” said Col. John Doran of the St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office in an article posted on his office’s Facebook page.
When no ghosts emerged, the group set the mansion on fire, Doran said.
The fire happened Thursday night and the group was arrested the next day. They were identified as Joshua Allen, 21; Joshua Briscoe, 20; Joseph Landin, 20; Dusten Davenport, 30; Kevin Barbe, 20; and Byron Meek, 29. A 17-year-old boy was also arrested.