PD: Man throws lighter fluid on vet, gets shot

Posted at 4:27 AM, Mar 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-30 17:50:02-04

Officials are investigating a shooting following an attempt to set the homeowner on fire Wednesday morning in Mesa.

The incident happened around 1:00 a.m. on Wednesday in the area of Dobson and Broadway Roads in Mesa.

Mesa police say a man in his 20s set fire to the outside of a mobile home. The homeowner came outside because he heard a noise and found his home on fire and the suspect out front.

The man's wife was inside grabbing water to try and put the fire out, said police.

Diana Clevenger, Mesa police spokesperson, said the man confronted the suspect who then allegedly sprayed lighter fluid in the homeowner's face and body and attempted to set him on fire.

The homeowner, a Vietnam vet, according to police, shot the suspect, striking him once in the arm. The suspect ran away and was found about 200 yards away asking for help.

The suspect was taken to the hospital for treatment. His injuries are believed to be not life threatening.

The homeowner was treated on scene and was otherwise not injured. The wife was also not harmed.

Police said this appears to be a random incident and that the suspect and homeowner do not know each other.

"I've never seen anything like this," said Clevenger.

The suspect could face charges of arson of an occupied structure, aggravated assault, endangerment, among others.