nieuws

Night Porter Denies Arson Murder of Hotel Guests

Horeca

A night porter appeared in court today charged with murdering an elderly couple who died in a fire at a hotel. William Robertson, 75, and his wife Margaret, 81, from Blackpool, died after they were overcome by smoke in the fire at the Moat House Hotel, in Bolton, Greater Manchester, in April 2001, Liverpool Crown Court heard.

Lee Paul Carson, 24, who was the night porter at the hotel, denies murdering the couple by deliberately starting the fire on the third floor.

The court heard Carson, from Moses Gate, Bolton, was arrested after allegedly boasting about starting the fire to his girlfriend and to two fellow prisoners while he was in custody at Forest Bank prison, in Salford.

The prosecution claimed that Carson had a fascination with fire safety procedures and had told a fellow member of staff at the hotel that he had become an expert in the subject while in the army.

But Carson’s only military was a few weeks in the Territorial Army, the court heard.Anthony Gee, prosecuting, said: “He claimed he had been trained in such matters during his time in the army. In fact he had been in the Territorial Army for a few weeks – it was pie in the sky.

‘He was particularly interested in procedures and wanted to present himself as someone of importance.’The court heard how Mr and Mrs Robertson died after becoming trapped in the 138-room hotel.

Their bodies were found in the corridor outside their room on the third floor shortly after the fire started early on April 24.Mr Gee told the jury that the fire was caused after Carson allegedly set fire to some mobile beds, which had been left in the corridor on the same floor as Mr and Mrs Robertson’s room.

Some days beforehand, Carson had been involved in two false fire alarms at the hotel and an incident where a fire extinguisher was deliberately discharged, the jury was told.Mr Gee said: ‘Carson was an inadequate man who liked to boast. The man with a Territorial Army background. It may have been he thought by starting the fire that he could rescue someone, playing the hero. It may have been he was plain bored.’

The jury were also asked to consider separate manslaughter charges if they did not believe there was enough evidence to find Carson guilty of murder.

Lee Paul Carson, 24, who was the night porter at the hotel, denies murdering the couple by deliberately starting the fire on the third floor.

The court heard Carson, from Moses Gate, Bolton, was arrested after allegedly boasting about starting the fire to his girlfriend and to two fellow prisoners while he was in custody at Forest Bank prison, in Salford.

The prosecution claimed that Carson had a fascination with fire safety procedures and had told a fellow member of staff at the hotel that he had become an expert in the subject while in the army.

But Carson’s only military was a few weeks in the Territorial Army, the court heard.Anthony Gee, prosecuting, said: “He claimed he had been trained in such matters during his time in the army. In fact he had been in the Territorial Army for a few weeks – it was pie in the sky.

‘He was particularly interested in procedures and wanted to present himself as someone of importance.’The court heard how Mr and Mrs Robertson died after becoming trapped in the 138-room hotel.

Their bodies were found in the corridor outside their room on the third floor shortly after the fire started early on April 24.Mr Gee told the jury that the fire was caused after Carson allegedly set fire to some mobile beds, which had been left in the corridor on the same floor as Mr and Mrs Robertson’s room.

Some days beforehand, Carson had been involved in two false fire alarms at the hotel and an incident where a fire extinguisher was deliberately discharged, the jury was told.Mr Gee said: ‘Carson was an inadequate man who liked to boast. The man with a Territorial Army background. It may have been he thought by starting the fire that he could rescue someone, playing the hero. It may have been he was plain bored.’

The jury were also asked to consider separate manslaughter charges if they did not believe there was enough evidence to find Carson guilty of murder.

Reageer op dit artikel