'Watch me burn': Drunk Stockton woman sang Eminem and Rihanna hit as fire raged at home

Katie Richardson set her Stockton home alight while her neighbour's five children slept next door. Credit: NCJ Media

A drunk woman live-streamed herself singing a song with the lyrics "watch me burn" as she sat inside the blazing home she had purposefully torched, a court has heard.

Katie Richardson, 28, set her semi-detached home in Stockton alight in the early hours of 16 April, while her neighbour's five children slept next door.

A nearby resident alerted the emergency services after they heard smoke alarms coming from the house on Harvest Grove, Stillington at about 2am.

They frantically awoke Richardson's next-door neighbour, who managed to flee his property with his partner and their five children.

Speaking at a sentencing hearing at Teesside Crown Court on Tuesday 27 September, Prosecutor Tabitha Buck said: "They left the property and saw next door engulfed in flames.

"The windows were cracking, doors melting and they described the fire as being completely out of control."

Outlining the case, Ms Buck said when 999 crews arrived the defendant - who has mental health issues - was stood away from the property and was shouting that a man was still inside.

She said: "Multiple fire units prepared to make entry into the building. Ms Richardson maintained that there was someone inside so officers called additional support and kept entering the building. This resulted in a firefighter receiving a minor injury to his finger."The court heard a woman then approached crews and showed them a Facebook Live of the defendant.

It showed Richardson sitting on the sofa filming a dressing gown which was hung up on fire in her living room, singing Love the Way You Lie by Eminem featuring Rihanna.

Ms Buck said: "She was not doing anything about the fire instead she was singing Love The Way You Lie by Eminem featuring Rihanna, which has the lyric 'watch me burn'.

After desperate attempts by firefighters to retrieve the trapped man the defendant said: "Haha there's not even anyone in there he's still in f***ing prison."

The defendant was then arrested and taken to the University Hospital of North Tees, in Stockton, to be treated.

Ms Buck said: "She continued to flip between being emotional and aggressive and at one stage tried to leave the hospital.

"Two officers took hold of her arms to stop her leaving and placed her in handcuffs. She pulled her arm away and began throwing punches towards both officers."

The court heard one of the punches hit an officer in the right eye. Richardson was interviewed but gave no comment to most of the questions.

The 28-year-old, of no fixed address, has 10 convictions for 15 offences which include criminal damage, assaulting an emergency worker and robbery.

She was due to be sentenced on Tuesday after admitting arson with reckless endangerment to life and assaulting an emergency worker. However, the case was adjourned.

Recorder Simon Richardson stood the case down before her mitigation as he wanted further information before sentencing her.

The case will resume at 9:45am on Thursday 29 September.

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