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Second man arrested over ’murder’ of dad in suspected arson attack after firework was posted through his letterbox

A SECOND suspect has been arrested after a father was killed when a huge commercial firework was posted through his letterbox.

Anthony Nicholls, 56, was in an induced coma since he was rescued by firefighters from his blazing house in Birmingham on November 2, but later died.

Today police arrested a suspect, 22, on suspicion of murder. It comes after a 29-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder yesterday.

Fire ripped through the house after the massive pyrotechnic exploded 200 times in two terrifying minutes.

West Midlands Police said: "The fire started after an industrial-sized firework was placed in the property by a group of men who burst into Mr Nicholls’ home at around 11.20pm as he and his partner enjoyed a Chinese takeaway.

"The firework was lit and caused a major fire.

"His partner, a 50-year-old woman, escaped with fractures to her lower limbs after jumping from a first floor window at the property.

"She has been released from hospital, but suffered life changing injuries."


Neighbours said they heard the victim desperately screaming for help just after 11pm.

One said: "I heard him shouting, screaming for help. He broke all the windows to try to get out."

Anthony was carried from the house unconscious by firefighters and given CPR in the garden before paramedics arrived.

The former hardware store worker was rushed to hospital with 60 per cent burns and never regained consciousness.

Neighbour Matthew Green said after the blaze: "It's so shocking and it's unnerved everyone.

"The house looks totally gutted but the firemen were just fantastic. They just got straight in there to try and save whoever was inside."

Information can be given to police  by calling 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


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