Augusta man arrested after two attempts to set house on fire with wife and six children inside

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AUGUSTA (WJBF) – An Augusta man, 50-year-old George Arno Lyons, is under arrest on five charges connected to a family violence call around 3 p.m. Sunday, May 31st, in which he threatened his wife and six juveniles with burning down the family home with them in it.

After an emergency call, deputies arrived at the Starnes Street residence where Lyons was found with his legs from the knees down covered in what was believed to be flammable liquid. 

According to interviews done at the scene, Lyons told the family he would burn the house down if his wife and her children did not leave. Then, Lyons is said to have gone to the kitchen and began pouring cooking oil onto the floor and walking throughout the entire house until three bottles were emptied.

Then, according the incident report, Lyons is said to have lit a piece of paper on fire on the top of the stove and dropped it onto the floor, but the oil soaked the paper and extinguished the flame.

After the oil failed to catch fire, the report reads that Lyons went outside and returned with a red five-gallon can of gasoline normally kept underneath the porch and poured the contents on top of the cooking oil around the home.

Before attempting to light the mixture of gas and vegetable oil on fire, again using a piece of paper lit on the stovetop, Lyons was reported to have told the family he would set the house on fire rather than let them live in it.

Deputies found oil on the floor of every room in the house, as well as observing a discarded empty gas can and two charred pieces of paper on floor of the kitchen.

In addition to a hold being placed on him for violating the conditions of his parole for an earlier charge, Lyons is charged with one count of Terroristic Threats and Acts and at least four counts of Cruelty of Children in the Third Degree. 

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