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Ipswich: Man who claimed he was holding child hostage in his flat and started fire outside is jailed

11:40 10 April 2014

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court

Archant

A 36-year-old man who started a fire in a communal area outside his flat while claiming he was holding a child hostage has been jailed for two years.

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Armed police went to Anthony Hoare’s flat above the Corner Shop in Clapgate Lane, Ipswich, at around 10.50pm on January 13.

Hoare had drunk four or five cans of super-strength lager and taken sleeping tablets before starting a fire outside his door, Ipswich Crown Court heard yesterday.

A stand-off began after neighbours were disturbed by items being smashed and were concerned the shop beneath Hoare’s one-bedroom flat was being burgled.

It turned out that Hoare was throwing his belongings onto the street below, said Robert Sadd, prosecuting.

Hoare, who was seen waving a knife, claimed he was holding a young child hostage but it was later discovered he was lying.

During the incident Hoare was heard to say: “Someone is going to die tonight. Wait and see,” said Mr Sadd.

Police officers forced entry to the premises and evacuated a mother and her three children from a neighbouring flat while a fire crew put out a fire in the communal area.

When officers entered Hoare’s flat he had walked towards them holding what appeared to be a brick. When he refused to drop it an officer used a Taser on him.

Hoare admitted arson being reckless as to whether lives would be endangered and was jailed for two years.

Describing the offence, Judge John Holt said: “This was a serious incidence of arson which could have got out of control.”

Richard Wood, for Hoare, said at the time of the offence his client had been depressed after a relationship break-up and because he could not get a job.

He had taken a cocktail of drink and prescribed drugs and since the incident had decided to get help and was drinking much less.

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1 comment

  • Re the last line about drinking less. Hopefully, during his time behind bars, he will not be drinking at all. Problem solved.

    Report this comment

    The original Victor Meldrew

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