1. #1
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    Mar 2002
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    Post Domestic Violence & Fire as a Weapon

    Over a year ago, an Ontario County,NY man set fire to his house while his wife and kids were sleeping then went to a distant phone to call for help. Luckily the man was convicted of murder. I do not know how many incidents of domestic violence involve the use of fire as a weapon, but it should be of concern to every fire fighter and law enforcement officer alike. I am sure that a number of arson fires had domestic violence as a catalyst, but as a result of helping in the fight againse domestic violence that started from recent losses in my family, one a heroin overdose, I felt it would be fitting to share my concerns on the subject with the fire fighter community since it can happen there, too. Unlike the movie, THE BURNING BED, based on a true story, when the battered woman fought back the only way she knew how after the system failed her repeatedly, such incidents could already be far too common. Even if I can't get in my hometown department, I am determined to make a positive difference one way or another, even if it means running an errand service for fire fighters and anything else I can do to be of service to America's Bravest. This issue of domestic violence involving the use of fire as a weapon is something that needs to be nipped in the bud and the sooner the better. God bless all of you and God bless America.
    Jim Mancuso

  2. #2
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    This issue of domestic violence involving the use of fire as a weapon is something that needs to be nipped in the bud and the sooner the better.

    This is an empty, hollow post.

    What do you propose be done about it? The crimes of domestic violence and arson are very prevalent in today's society. There are many social programs being run to cut down on the incidence of domestic violence and abuse. It doesn't even make a dent. And if you could figure out a way to stomp out arson, you would be onto something. Let's hear your ideas.

    In reality, the incidence of domestic violence/arson is not all that common. They are both serious crimes, but they are not often found together. In fact, dom vio is not even listed as one of the top motives for arson.

  3. #3
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    Excellent response George. I have yet to be involved in any domestic violence arsons. I have had numerous homicide/arson incidents in my career, as well as a suicide/arson that almost was a D.V/Arson. A gentleman burst into his estranged wife's home, shot her twice with a shotgun, she ran out, the cops arrived he barracaded himself in the house and lit it up. Due to the condition of his body when we finally found it, (we and the cops ensured it was going to the point where he couldn't shoot out any windows) the ME couldn't find any evidence if he shot himself first. Luckily the 1 exposure we had was on the side of the house with no windows.

    Jim, thank you for your kind words. I wish you luck with anything your family is dealing with. Also as George said there is no real solution to any problem you describe. Its like what I was told many times when I was a cop, "why don't you go catch a rapist?" and I would ask them "Tell me what a rapist looks like!" An arsonist is the same way, throw in another violent crime and forget it.

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