Police investigate attempted homicide, arson in South Daytona

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SOUTH DAYTONA, Fla. —

Police said a man in South Daytona is responsible for starting a fire in front of an apartment building Saturday morning.

Officers and the fire department responded to the Spanish Villa apartment complex on South Ridgewood Avenue about 9:40 a.m.

A resident was inside their apartment with a child when the suspect, later identified as Arthur Avery, 31, repeatedly banged on the door and yelled for someone by the name of Dred.

The resident told Avery they did not anyone by that name, and Avery accused the resident of lying.

Police said the suspect was carrying a gas can, and poured gasoline around the breezeway of the apartment and on a mattress that was under the stairs.

Avery allegedly used a match to light the gas on fire at the front door of the four-unit apartment building and on the stairs.

Residents on the second floor had to be rescued by firefighters and those on the ground floor were able to leave through their back doors.

Witnesses told police Avery's clothes caught fire and he fled the area in a car with two other men.

Police later located Avery, who was taken to the hospital for his burn wounds. Police plan to interview him after he's treated.

Avery is facing a list of charges that include attempted homicide and arson.

Witnessed told police they never saw the men around the neighborhood before.

Police have not identified the man who helped Avery leave the apartment building.