Trailer arsonist gets prison sentence

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VISTA, Calif. – A Valley Center man who set his former fiancee’s trailer on fire while she was inside and slashed the tires on her car was sentenced Wednesday to four years in prison.

Marc Bentley Thompson, 53, previously pleaded guilty to arson anddomestic violence charges.

The victim had taken out a protective court order against Thompson prior to the fire, which occurred shortly after 5:45 p.m. on Feb. 24 in the 30000 block of  Spearhead Trail in Valley Center.

The formerly betrothed couple had gotten into an argument before Thompson punctured the tires of her car, grabbed a container of gasoline and poured it onto the entry of the trailer while she was inside, sheriff’s Lt. J.T. Faulkner said.

Thompson then ignited the gasoline from about 20 feet away.

The woman ran in stocking feet through flames to escape, singing the hair on her body but emerging otherwise unscathed, Faulkner said.

Thompson fled with help from his 83-year-old mother, according to the lieutenant, who said a deputy spotted the mother and son about five miles away and arrested the defendant without incident.

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