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Man jailed after starting three fires in Maidstone town centre

By Chloe Holmwood

An arsonist responsible for a series of fires in Maidstone in just a few hours has been jailed.

Anthony Quinnell, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court to three arsons in the town centre, which he carried out on Sunday, April 15.

The 24-year-old was in the Millennium Park where he first set light to a tent belonging to a homeless person.

Maidstone Crown Court
Maidstone Crown Court

Shortly after, he walked to Ashford Road where he targeted a sofa and rubbish bin in the front garden of a private address. A woman who tried to put the fire out had to be treated at hospital for smoke inhalation.

Quinnell then went to a multi-story car park off Romney Place. Gaining access to a fire escape, he started a fire and then set off two extinguishers in the stairwell.

He was arrested on April 21 and subsequently charged with three offences of arson.

Quinnell was jailed for 256 days after pleading guilty
Quinnell was jailed for 256 days after pleading guilty

Appearing at Maidstone Crown Court on Tuesday, Quinnell was jailed for 256 days after pleading guilty. He had also breached a previous suspended sentence.

Detective Constable Robert Fursey said: "Quinnell showed no consideration of the danger these fires posed to people or property.

"The fact that he let off two fire extinguishers is also reprehensible.

"It is only right he serves a prison sentence."

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