Dukinfield man jailed for arson attack
Wednesday 3rd May 2017 @ 15:49 by Lee Wild
Dukinfield News

A man who tried to burn his neighbours alive inside their flat has been jailed for eight and-a-half years.

Jason Richmond, 45, of Peel Terrace, Dukinfield, pleaded guilty to arson with intent to endanger life.

The attack happened on August 21 last year when Richmond used an accelerant and a lighter to start a fire at the flat.

In the early hours of the morning, the couple were awoken by smoke alarms and their room was filled with smoke.

They attempted to escape through the front door but found it obstructed.

The door had been tied shut with a section of rope by Richmond in an attempt to stop his neighbour and her partner from escaping the burning flat.

After repeated frantic attempts at forcing the door open, the woman and her partner managed to escape the blaze. However the couple’s two cats, Duchess and Holleigh did not survive.

Holleigh (L) and Duchess (R) that died in the fire

The attack came after a breakdown in relations between Richmond and his neighbour, after she became aware that he had made derogatory and threatening comments about her behind her back.

She texted Richmond telling him she knew of the threats and said she would call the police if he continued, but received no reply.

Detective Constable Mick Holloway, of GMPs Tameside borough said: “Jason Richmond is a dangerous individual who is now exactly where he should be to prevent him posing a risk to any other unsuspecting members of the public.

“This was clearly a premeditated attack and one that could have had far more serious consequences if the alarm had not been raised when it was.

“Although his intended victims managed to escape unharmed, their cats sadly did not survive the fire which, as well as the damage caused to their home, left them absolutely devastated.

“I hope they will feel that some justice has been done today.”

GMFRS Group Manager, Peter Buckley said: “The work between the fire investigation team and our partners in the police was critical to the investigation into Jason Richmond.

“This was a potentially life threatening situation that could have had devastating effects. Thankfully, the flat was fitted with working smoke detectors that alerted the occupants to the fire. Without that early warning the outcome would have been very different.

“It’s pleasing that our strong partnership working with GMP and other agencies have provided the Court with the evidence required to secure a conviction.”

Fire damage outside the flat on Peel Terrace