Man sets fire at Yonge-Belsize to kill pets
Apartments went up in flames after threats by the accused
Shortly after midnight on March 13, a male suspect allegedly set fire to an apartment near Yonge Street and Belsize Drive. Police said the suspect had previously threatened to start a fire in order to kill some of the pets in the building.
Jenifferjit Sidhu, corporate communications officer with the Toronto Police Service (TPS), said that police were called to the scene, but the two-alarm fire had already spread through several units on the second floor of the building leading to the death of one or two pets. Several tenants were inside the building at the time of the fire and were evacuated by firefighters.
“Police received a call early Tuesday morning regarding a fire that took place in the Yonge Street and Belsize Drive area. A man set fire to an apartment, causing the death of some of the pets. He then barricaded himself in the apartment,” said Sidhu.
Later that day, a 34-year-old male suspect was arrested in connection with the fire and the harm to animals.
“He has been arrested, and he has been charged with a number of arson-related and criminal code charges. He did appear in court on the same day,” Sidhu said.
The accused was charged with a total of seven offenses, including arson having disregard for human life, arson causing property damage, uttering threats to cause property damage, uttering threats to harm animals, kill, maim or wound animals, mischief over $5,000 and assault.
According to police, the case is now before the courts, and Ontario’s Office of the Fire Marshal is conducting an investigation.
Police are asking anyone with information on this case to contact police.