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Haslingden arsonist to be sentenced
9:03am Monday 18th February 2013 in News
AN arsonist who started a blaze which gutted the caravan he was living in last July, is awaiting sentence.
Kenneth Hewitt, 43, was due to learn his fate last Friday at Burnley Crown Court, but the case was adjourned and he will be dealt with at Preston Crown Court in March.
Hewitt, of no fixed address, but living off Grane Road in Haslingden, at the time, has admitted arson. He has been on remand for seven months.
The hearing was told the defendant was said to have a history of setting fires, including at the same site.
In 2007, he started a blaze at his mother’s home and trashed the lounge, after a row over loud music. He was said to have sat calmly smoking a cigarette while the fire took hold.
A neighbour, alerted by Hewitt’s mother Mary’s smoke alarm, was confronted with smoke pouring from the terrace house in Haslingden and had trouble seeing when he dashed inside to help.
Hewitt, who, the court was told, had suffered mental problems, was said to have been unrepentant about his actions. Hewitt, then living in Bacup, admitted arson and damage and was locked up for 15 months.
Sentencing him then, Judge Brian Duckworth had slammed Hewitt as ‘bad tempered, churlish and cruel’, and said he had caused his mother a great deal of distress, upset and anguish.
The judge, who had been told Mrs Hewitt had not wanted the defendant prosecuted as she thought he needed help, said that was what a mother would do and she was a very forgiving lady.
But, he added: “The public interest must be served.”