Man pleads not guilty to arson

RUSTON, La. (AP) - A Calhoun man has pleaded not guilty to charges that he set fire to two hotels in Ruston this past summer both of which he was charged with protecting as a security guard.

Ruston police arrested Brian Lanning in August and booked him with one count of simple arson and one count of aggravated arson.

Authorities say Lanning allegedly set fire to a hotel room at the Econo Lodge in Ruston in June and then another room at the Howard Johnson hotel in August.

State Judge R. Wayne Smith scheduled a pretrial hearing for Lanning on Nov. 3.

Information from: Ruston Daily Leader,  (Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.) AP-NY-10-19-09 0820EDT