Disabled grandmother, 64, and grandson, 12, “lucky to escape without injury” after thug sets fire car in “targeted attack”


DRAMATIC images show how a family were “lucky to have got out without injury” after their car was set alight in front of their home in a “targeted attack”.

64-year-old June Ellis was at home with her grandson Adam Walker, 12, when neighbours heard an explosion on Sunday.

A thug had set the family’s silver Vauxhall ablaze outside their home in Leeds, West Yorkshire.

However, June, who is deaf, did not hear the incident and was nearly trapped inside with her grandson as the fire raged on.

Luckily, neighbours eventually reached June who managed to flee with Adam through her patio doors, as the front entrance was blocked by the flames.

The chilling moment the blaze was started was caught on CCTV, and shows a man approaching the car.

Bright flames emerge and the man runs off as they increase in intensity.

Shocking images also show the horrific aftermath of the blaze.

Broken car window
The blaze was deliberately started (Image: Sam Walker)

The windows have been shattered in the intense heat, with the back of the vehicle completely scorched.

The melted interior is warped and littered with broken glass.

Adam’s mum, Sam Walker, took to Facebook to share the horrific video and pictures on Tuesday.

The 42-year-old wrote: “Last night 31-5-20 this happened to my mum in what we believe is a targeted attack.

“The evil piece of work walked through a neighbour’s garden, walked over the road, down the side of my mum’s car he then cut the fuel line and set the petrol alight.

“Police and Fire Service believe my mum, my 12-yr-old son and her dog were really lucky to have got out without injury.

“My mum and my son are very shook up.

Adam, 12, with grandmother June Ellis, 64

“We don’t know why anyone would want to hurt my mum or even attack her car.”

The incident has shocked may in the comments.

Chris Lee said: “Glad they are okay, hope the culprit is caught and sentenced to life.”

Ajmal O’Leary added: “Even threatening to burn someone’s car or house, that’s total scum behaviour.”

Linda Prior wrote: “The b******, I think the person who did this should be named and shamed. Then strung up in public for all to see.”

Sam today revealed it could have been a lot worse.

Burnt car
The youngster has been suffering from nightmares since the attack (Image: Sam Walker)

She said: “They were both asleep at the time. My mum is deaf and didn’t have her hearing aid in.

“There was an aerosol air freshener in the car that exploded with the heat which alerted neighbours.

“The police said if my mum didn’t have patio doors she would have been trapped.

“No one knows why she was targeted as she keeps herself to herself.

“The vile oxygen thief knew exactly what he was doing when he cut the fuel pipe, and lit the petrol, the wheelie bin also melted with the heat and flames.”

Sam said the incident has had a profound impact on her family’s well-being.
She added: “Mum hasn’t slept since this happened, she stays in the kitchen at the window watching in case he comes back.

Broken car window
The heat shattered the car’s windows (Image: Sam Walker)

“My son hasn’t slept much either and has been having nightmares of being in a fire.”

Police have appealed to anyone with information to come forward.

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: “Police were called at just after 1am on June 1 to a report a car had been set on fire on Winthorpe Crescent in Thorpe.

“A crime of arson has been recorded regarding the offence which is believed to have occurred at around midnight.

“Anyone who has information about what took place is asked to contact the Leeds South NPT on 101 referencing crime number 13200272275.”

A spokesman from West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “Fire crews from Rothwell Fire Station attended a car fire on Winthorpe Crescent in Thorpe on May 31st at 23.52 hrs.

“This fire is believed to have been deliberately set alight.

“One fire engine attended.”