St. Petersburg Times-Pasco County

Stepson escapes home fire
By Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published July 5, 2003

ZEPHYRHILLS - A 43-year-old man set fire to his own home Thursday morning while his stepson was asleep inside, according to a sheriff's report.

William Joseph Bassett admitted holding an open flame to a blanket and then leaving the home without waking his stepson, the report said.

The stepson woke up and escaped unharmed from the fire, which did $20,000 in damage to the home at 40314 Longstreet Ave., according to the report.

Bassett was charged with arson to an occupied residence and was held Friday in the county jail in lieu of $100,000 bail.