A man accused of setting fire to his family’s Adams home Tuesday before leading police on a cross-country search long has suffered from mental health issues and alcoholism.

That’s according to his stepmother, who lived in the home with her husband. The Berkshire Eagle reports that 34-year-old Courtney Cross, of Pittsfield, pleaded not guilty yesterday in Northern Berkshire District Court to a charge of arson of a dwelling.

Court documents state that a text message was sent at the time of the fire, Cross told his former girlfriend that it was "the day of reckoning,"

He was ordered held without bail pending an Oct. 30th dangerousness hearing. Cross became the subject of a Berkshires-wide search after the blaze broke out shortly before 1:30 p.m. at the 155 East Street home.

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