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Suspected Arsonist Burns Westmoreland County Family's Home

EAST HUNTINGDON (KDKA) -- State police are investigating to find out who tried to burn down a Westmoreland County family's home while they were asleep inside.

It happened on Liberty Street in East Huntingdon.

The first attempt was last Wednesday, but a neighbor noticed the flames on the back porch and put it out with a hose.

The more recent attempt was Monday morning. Walter Weltz was at work and his teenage son was on vacation with a friend. But Weltz' wife and her sister were sleeping inside. They heard shattering glass and thought someone was trying to break in, but just moments later they smelled smoke.

They were able to escape out of a front door, but the family's cat died in the fire.

State police say this is a sensitive investigation. They say because people were inside at the time, it could potentially be considered an attempted homicide.

The family says someone has been terrorizing them for weeks. It began with someone tearing out their tomato plants and then cutting their golf net. It then escalated to arson on two occasions.

The family isn't sure if they'll rebuild in the same location. For now, they are happy to all be alive.

More Westmoreland County News
Pennsylvania State Police

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