February 11, 2014 at 12:00 pm EDT | by Steve Charing
Couple’s Essex house firebombed
John Mosley Jr., gay news, Washington Blade, firebombed

John Mosley, Jr. was arrested for allegedly firebombing a couple’s house.

A house where two women were living was firebombed on Feb. 4. Police arrested a neighbor, John Mosley, Jr., 65, in connection with the crime that destroyed the two-story house in the 700 block of Essex Avenue. Mosley is being held without bail and has been charged with attempted murder, arson and assault.

Two women, Rose Bartko and Catherine Smith, had lived in the house for a number of years. Bartko told Baltimore County Police that there was a heated argument between Smith and Mosley and that he threatened the couple. Bartko was not in the house at the time, but Smith was inside to call police for help when she heard windows shattering and saw fire. A neighbor helped her escape.

Smith was treated for smoke inhalation at Bayview Medical Center. A firefighter and police officer also received minor injuries. The couple’s dog died in the blaze and their cat is missing.

Baltimore County Police spokesperson Elise Armacost told the Blade that the dispute between Mosley and his neighbors had been a recent occurrence, and police had visited Moseley several times since January. Police found no evidence to suggest that this was a hate crime.

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