Nov 23, 2009 9:43 AM by Kate Mundy
Jennings Police arrested a Jennings woman's ex-husband for trying to destroy her house. Jennings Police say it followed years of domestic problems and complaints.
Friday the attempted arson was the talk of N. Louise Street. Neighbors say they came uncomfortably close to having their homes leveled.
"Upset, very upset about it. I hope he gets the full treatment of what he deserves, cause not only could he hurt that one lady, he could've hurt all the families around here and all the children," said a man who lives across the street.
The homeowner didn't even get as far as inside the door when she noticed a strong smell of gas she backed away and called authorities. "She extinguished her cigarette and stayed outside," said Jennings Police Sgt. Jean Cooley.
Inside, officials with the Jennings Police and Fire Departments noticed the heater's gas line was intentionally cut and then they heard clicking. "The stove gas had been turned off and the stove igniter was on and clicking and causing a spark," said Sgt. Cooley.
Police say what happened at 407 N. Louise Street wasn't accidental. Mark Anthony Spitzer, 47, confessed to breaking into the house and trying to set it on fire.
He was out of jail on bond for stalking his ex-wife and violating her restraining order against him. But his attempt at destroying the home they once shared, failed after too much gas burned up all the oxygen. "To his astonishment the house should've caught fire long before she got home and it didn't," said Sgt. Cooley.
Spitzer is charged with attempted aggravated arson and burglary of an inhabited dwelling. He's now in the city jail with no bond.