10 homeless, as Jilted man sets Sophia apartments ablaze


…Suspect on the run

A late night fire in Sophia, Greater Georgetown has left ten persons homeless and more than $10 million in losses after it completely destroyed an apartment building.

What remained of the apartment building
What remained of the apartment building

According to reports, the fire, which is suspected to be the work of a known arsonist, started around 23:10hrs.

Inews understands that the apartments were owned by Yonnette Roberts, her daughters Deon and Kenesha Roberts, and her son-in-law Sherwin Charles.

This publication was told that three families were at home at the time of the incident and two of the four occupants also owned businesses which were destroyed in the flames.

The fire was reportedly started by an enraged man with whom Yonette Roberts allegedly refused to pursue a relationship.

She told this publication that she was at the National Park, Georgetown when she received a call from a friend who informed her that her home was on fire.

The woman said that when she arrived at the scene, the building was already burnt flat and nothing was saved.

Yonette Roberts
Yonette Roberts

Roberts divulged that the arson suspect, who was nowhere to be found after the fire, had made several threats to the families residing in the apartment building. “He does always make a lot of threats to me, but we never took him seriously, but he was the only one that was in my apartment, so he set the fire and then escaped because he cannot be found since the incident occurred,” she explained.

Charles, who was at home at the time of the fire, said that he heard noises coming from the adjoining apartment and called out to the alleged arsonist, who is known to them.

He relayed that the man told him that the noise was coming from some puppies that were owned by the families.

He further explained that he continued about his business and was about to go to bed when he received a call from his sister-in-law, in another apartment, informing him that the building was on fire.

“So after she called me, I ran out to see if I could try to prevent the fire from spreading, but it was already very big, so I just ran back inside to attempt to save some stuff from inside of my apartment,” Charles said.

He added that he was unable to save much, as the fire spread quickly, consuming the building.

An angry neighbour told this publication that some of the children from the apartments could have died if not for persons who assisted in getting them out of the burning building.

“I saw when the building started to burn, and these people were inside and unaware of what was happening and I started to make noise to alert them. All of them children were inside the house and all of them could’ve died in that fire.”

According to the families, the apartments were fully furnished with every necessity. One of the business owners told this publication that she had only recently restocked her business and could not believe that now she was left “with only this clothes that I have on”.

The Fire Service was called to the scene, but was unable to lend much assistance.
The matter was reported to the Police and a manhunt has since been launched for the suspect.


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