Jury deliberates case against man accused of starting Pizza Man fire

Feras Rahman

MILWAUKEE — The jury will resume deliberations Friday, May 18th in the federal trial of a man accused of starting a fire that destroyed the Pizza Man restaurant on Milwaukee’s east side two years ago.

The fire at the Pizza Man restaurant raged on the corner of North and Oakland Avenue, and 155 firefighters battled to contain it. Several were injured. Four businesses, including the landmark Pizza Man, were destroyed.

Now, 28-year-old Feras Rahman of Milwaukee is on trial for arson and other charges.

Rahman faces a minimum of 17 years in prison.

Rahman ran the Black and White Cafe – one of four businesses in the Pizza Man complex where the fire originated.

Thursday in federal court, lawyers on both sides made their closing arguments.

The prosecution admitted they only have circumstantial evidence to prove their case. However, they argued Rahman is the only one that had access to his business, and the only one with motive to burn it down.

Defense lawyers pounced on the lack of direct evidence, pointing to another possible suspect they claim wasn’t fully investigated. Their goal is to show there is enough reasonable doubt that Rahman cannot be convicted.

The 12-person jury entered deliberations Thursday evening. No estimation has been given on when they may reach a verdict.

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