Man Starts Two Fires in his House: Laughs When Firemen Arrive

Paragraph nine reads:  "On both occasions, said Mr Nance, the defendant had been under the influence of alcohol and he had also been taking prescribed drugs for depression. He said he tried to take his own life using tablets."

SSRI Stories Note:  The Physicians Desk Reference states that antidepressants can cause a craving for alcohol and can cause alcohol abuse. Also, the liver cannot metabolize the antidepressant and the alcohol simultaneously, thus leading to higher levels of both alcohol and the antidepressant in the human body.

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Cumbrian man who started two fires in his home jailed

By Staff Reporter

Last updated at 12:22, Wednesday, 09 March 2011

A depressed Workington man whose barrister said he started two fires in his home as a “cry for help” has been jailed for three years.

Michael Tremble, 43, was seen by neighbours smiling as he stood in his burning second-floor flat, Carlisle Crown Court heard yesterday.

At an earlier court hearing, he had pleaded guilty to two counts of committing arson while being reckless of whether life was endangered.

Frank Nance, prosecuting, said the first fire happened in the defendant’s home at Bowness Court, Workington, on August 18 last year.

At the time, Tremble’s wife had been in bed but, alerted by the flat’s fire alarms, she put out the two sofas which were on fire. The second blaze happened on August 26.

On this occasion, said Mr Nance, neighbours saw the defendant through the windows as the fire took hold.

“He was smiling and laughing before the fire service arrived,” said Mr Nance.

Tremble made no attempt to escape the blaze and was eventually brought out, unconscious, by firefighters.

On both occasions, said Mr Nance, the defendant had been under the influence of alcohol and he had also been taking prescribed drugs for depression. He said he tried to take his own life using tablets.

Lloyd Morgan, for Tremble, said it was a sad case though thankfully without tragic consequences. Some weeks before the fires, his client had lost his job and his father had recently been diagnosed with a serious illness, said the barrister.

“Unfortunately, he turned to alcohol more and more.

“Lighting these fires was no more than a cry for help from a troubled man,” he said.

The barrister added that the defendant had not intended to damage property or injure anybody, and nor had he any fascination with fire.

Judge Barbara Forrester told Tremble: “You put at risk the lives of other people living in the flats, and on the first occasion your wife.”

First published at 11:23, Wednesday, 09 March 2011
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk