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Police: Menifee Man Set Fire To His House With Girlfriend Inside

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MENIFEE (CBS) — Officials in Menifee have arrested a 45-year-old man for allegedly setting fire to a house in which his female companion suffered smoke inhalation and one of the couple’s dogs died.

Edwin Martin Monsen Jr., 45, was arrested and charged with suspicion of arson, assault with a deadly weapon, domestic violence, animal cruelty and making criminal threats, court and jail records show.

Authorities say the man lit the fire following a domestic incident.

A dog died and Monsen’s 51-year-old female companion suffered smoke inhalation in the Monday evening fire on Sussex Stakes Street in a subdivision just east of Menifee city limits.

Police allege Monsen threatened the woman with a kitchen knife and put her in a choke hold. He later removed his possessions from the home and started a fire using an accelerant in the bedroom, according to the police report.

Two dogs in the house escaped injury, the report said.

Monsen was booked into the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta and is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail, records show.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

 

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