AN ARSONIST has been jailed for six-and-a-half years after a forensic examination of his phone found a text message in which he bragged about committing the crime.
Darren Hall originally denied petrol bombing Milus News in Carters Green (Sandwell LPU) in February but the 30-year-old later changed his plea to guilty after PC Craig Whittaker found the admission on Hall’s mobile.
Wolverhampton Crown Court heard how Hall had launched the attack in revenge after he was refused service 20 minutes earlier for being too drunk. He was jailed who for six and a half years on Tuesday.
PC Whittaker said: “We found a number of messages he had sent to a friend about the attack and one which even told him to look in a newspaper to read all about it!
“He always denied the offence and showed no remorse, but when I presented the text message evidence to court, he had no option but to change his plea to guilty.”
“If it were not for the bravery and quick thinking of the shopkeeper there was a real possibility that someone could have been seriously injured or even killed.”