Woman set fire to bed in suicide bid
AWOMAN set fire to a house in a failed bid to kill herself after she stopped taking her medication for bipolar disorder, a court heard.
Stacey Linda Glover, of High Street, Macclesfield, had been staying with friends at the house in Minshull New Road, Crewe, when she decided to try and take her life by setting fire to her bed.
After smoke alarms went off, the 34-year-old was led from the burning house before throwing herself onto the floor, screaming that she’d started the blaze and ‘making karate-style movements’, the court heard.
Glover pleaded guilty to arson, being reckless as to whether life was endan- gered. At Chester Crown Court on September 18 she was given a three-year supervision order, a threeyear mental health treatment requirement and made subject to a rehabilitation requirement.
The court heard that Glover has a history of mental health problems and at the time of the incident, on June 14, had not been taking her medication.
Glover, who has no previous convictions, had stayed over at the rented home of friend Ryan Gordon and was upstairs with his two dogs when she set fire to the bed using a lighter, the court was told.
Mr Gordon, who heard the smoke alarm and saw black smoke coming from the back bedroom, led all three out into the street and returned to alert the other people in the house and elderly neighbours.
Peter Hussey, prosecuting, said: “(The defendant) threw herself onto the floor and screamed that she had done it. She then behaved in a very bizarre manner, described as ‘making karate-style movements’ with her arms and legs.”
He said Glover pulled a lighter from her bra.
The fire burned through the roof and caused £3,500 worth of damage.
Judge Nicholas Woodward said: “There were clearly risks to all of the people in that property, people could have died – people who had done nothing wrong at all and people who were friends of yours.
“Those risks extended to the next door neighbour’s house where an infirm 87-year-old man lived and if not for the actions of the neighbours, also could have died.
“The courts will always take a very serious view about setting fire to people’s houses... in the vast majority of cases the court will always impose an immediate custodial sentence.
“There’s exception... when people suffer from genuine and serious difficulties with their mental health.”
●● Firefighters damping down at the scene of the house fire started by Stacey Glover