CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Authorities say a Beckley man set fire to his ex-girlfriend's apartment on Charleston's West Side after she told him to move out.
Antonio Lejuane Wade, 29, of Beckley, was arrested early Sunday after Charleston firefighters put out the small fire under the steps of April Woods' Sixth Avenue apartment.
It started out as a domestic dispute between Wade and Woods, said Lt. Steve Cooper, chief of detectives. It escalated just before 2:30 a.m. Sunday.
"She had asked him to leave the residence and to move out," Cooper said. "He took some of his clothing and set fire to it under her stairwell."
Charleston firefighters quickly responded and put out the small blaze. The fire caused minor damage to the wooden steps. Woods was not injured, Cooper said.
"The fact that there was only one way in and out of that apartment obviously makes this type of arson more disturbing and more dangerous," Cooper said. "Fortunately he's been arrested and charged and we're hoping to be able to help the victim as much as possible to remain safe."
Cooper said that in a neighborhood like that, where houses are so compact and close together, that a structure fire in the area could have spread easily causing more danger to residents.
Wade was charged with first-degree arson. He is being held at South Central Regional Jail on $5,000 bond.