Leaflet filled with dog poo set alight and posted through letterbox in spate of arson attacks

A scared couple said they were too scared to sleep after a spate of arson attacks on their Middlesbrough home.

Mother of six Charlotte McKenna says she and her autistic partner, John Williams, 31, have been victims of at least six incidents in the past two weeks alone.

But “the last straw,” said the 36-year-old, was when she discovered on Friday that a burning leaflet full of dog poop had been hung in the house on Union Street in Gresham.

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Speaking to Teesside Live, Charlotte said, “I haven’t slept in weeks, and neither has John, who has learning difficulties and mental health problems.

“It’s so far that I have to hold him until he falls asleep and we now keep our bedroom door locked at night.”

She added, “This morning I made a cup of coffee in the kitchen and went upstairs for two minutes and my back door was set on fire.

“Someone put a towel on the floor and set it on fire.

“That was after the same towel was lit on the clothesline the night before.”

Union Street’s Charlotte McKenna and John Williams say their home was attacked six times by arsonists in two weeks.

Charlotte related how the first incident happened on June 25, when a chair was set on fire in the back garden.

Since then, the couple’s trash can, along with other patio furniture, the back door and the mailbox have also been targeted.

Charlotte said all incidents have been reported to the Cleveland police, but she claims “nothing will be done about it”.

“Getting the dog slime posted through the door this morning was the last straw for me,” she added.

“I’m getting to the point where I think about what the police need to actually do something about it?

“Will it take me and my partner to be seriously injured, or will one or both of us be killed in a fire?

“All I get when I call the police is ‘we’re doing our best’.

“We are now at the end of our tether and are scared of how it will end.”

A chair burned in one of the incidents

A Cleveland Police Department spokesman said: “The police recently received reports of criminal damage and minor arson at this address.

On August 1st, the evening of August 5th and the morning of Friday August 6th, small fires were set outside their property.

Also on August 6th, shortly before noon, we received the message that a burning leaflet had been posted through a fire-fighting mailbox that had been left open at the address.

“Fortunately, the homeowner put out the fire and there was no damage.”

Rubbish bin destroyed in suspected arson

Rubbish bin destroyed in suspected arson

Police also visited the address on Friday, and officers remain in touch with the victim and offer advice on protection, the spokesman added.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the police on reference number 131147.

The spokesman added that a police officer was at the address Friday for more details and an investigation into all of these reports is ongoing, with police continuing to liaise with the victim and offer advice on protection.

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