Sunday, January 21, 2018
Public safety

Police: Personal dispute led man to torch house near Ybor

TAMPA — A man was jailed on an arson charge Sunday after he ignited the side of a house near Ybor City because he was upset with the owner, according to Tampa fire officials.

George Alfonzo Dean, 49, had an unspecified dispute with the owner of a home in the 2300 block of E Fifth Avenue, fire officials said. So, on Sunday afternoon, he walked up to the northeast side of the small house, poured flammable liquids and set it ablaze, according to an arrest report. Neighbors reported the fire about 2:35 p.m.

Fire Rescue crews arrived and quickly put out the flames. No one was injured, but the side of the home sustained significant damage, authorities said.

The same neighbors informed investigators that Dean had set the fire. He was tracked down a block away, near 2229 E Seventh Ave., and arrested.

While police were interviewing him about the arson, they searched Dean's jacket pocket and found a cigarette package that contained a woman's driver's license and a Visa credit card, according to an arrest report. The woman had previously reported the items stolen.

After being placed inside of a Tampa police car, Dean began kicking the back window, police said. He kicked it so hard that the glass portion was knocked out of alignment with the rear door frame, an arrest report stated.

All told, Dean landed in jail with charges of first-degree arson, petit theft and criminal mischief. He was being held without bail.

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