Man jailed for setting homeless man on fire and assaulting police officers

A man who set fire to a homeless person in Luton earlier this year then threatened and assaulted police officers while in custody has been jailed for ten and a half years.

Jun 9, 2020
By Tony Thompson
David Weir

On the afternoon of January 1, David Weir sprayed a flammable liquid over a homeless man who was sitting outside a fast food restaurant in the town centre, before using a lighter to ignite the accelerant.

Fortunately, several members of the public who witnessed the incident were able to put out the flames, disarm Weir and call the emergency services.

Weir, 53, was arrested for grievous bodily harm with intent and assault on an emergency worker. While in custody, Weir was abusive and threatening to officers. He then spat at one police constable and threatened to urinate on him.

Weir was sentenced to ten years and six months in prison, with a five-year extended licence. He was also sentenced for four months for assaulting an emergency worker and six weeks for breaching his suspended sentence. These will run concurrently.

Detective Constable Gary Hatton said: “We are pleased with the sentence that Weir has received as his deliberate actions could have seriously endangered the life of this innocent man, who has luckily made a recovery.

“Without a doubt, the heroic actions from the members of the public who rushed to help the victim saved him from further harm and we commend them for putting his safety before their own and for confronting Weir and staying at the scene until the emergency services arrived.”

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