BROOKSVILLE — Hernando County authorities on Wednesday arrested a man accused of trying to set his former girlfriend and her new boyfriend on fire.
Sylvester Francis Kulaga, 52, broke into Lisa Massey's house on Highbury Boulevard about 6 a.m. Tuesday armed with lighter fluid, spray paint and a lighter, the Hernando Sheriff's Office said. Kulaga, who used to live with Massey at the house south of Brooksville, kicked open a bedroom door to find her and boyfriend James Mullis in bed.
Kulaga doused the couple with lighter fluid and tried to start a fire by spraying paint in their direction and igniting the stream, deputies said.
Massey jumped out of bed and lunged at Kulaga. A housemate, Marvin Harvey, heard the commotion and came to help. Kulaga grabbed Harvey by the throat and threw him out of the bedroom, investigators say.
Massey and Harvey eventually overpowered Kulaga and pushed him out of the house. He fled on foot and was arrested Wednesday evening, deputies said.
None of the people in the house at the time required medical treatment, a sheriff's spokeswoman said.
Kulaga, known as "Quigley," faces two charges of attempted murder and one count of battery.
He was convicted last year on charges of grand theft and drug possession. He was released from the Hernando County Detention Center on Saturday.