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  1. ITV Report

Man jailed for trying to set fire to house

David Grothier has been jailed for nine years Credit: Essex Police

A man has been jailed for nine years after being found guilty of arson with intent to endanger life in Colchester.

David Grothier, 50, of Chinook, Colchester, used pieces of burning wood to try to set fire to a home in Gazelle Court after a dispute with the people living there.

At around 7.10pm on Sunday, March 27, the fire service were called to reports of a suspicion fire after an alarm alerted neighbours.

Police found that a piece of wood with a smouldering cloth wrapped around it had been left in the doorway of the property.

Grothier was seen leaving the area with pieces of wood and was arrested at 7.45pm. Items recovered from his flat included a can of lighter fluid and cigarette lighters.

Grothier was found guilty following a trial at Ipswich Crown Court, which concluded on Monday, October 2.

He was also given an indefinite restraining order banning him from contacting the victims or going within 50 metres of Gazelle Court.

“Fortunately, no one was indoors at the time and neighbouring properties were quickly alerted to the fire. If the circumstances had been different, the occupants might have been seriously hurt or even killed.”

– Investigating officer Dc Aimee Burton, of Colchester CID