Man Accused Of Trying to Murder His Neighbours

A man has been charged with attempted murder after allegedly attempting to burn down his housing commission block of apartments.

What you need to know
  • The 30 year old man allegedly threatened neighbours before setting his housing commission apartment alight
  • The Rescue and Bomb Disposal Unit seized several items, including at least one firearm
  • The man faced court today charged with intent to murder, as well as other charges

A man accused of trying to murder his neighbours by setting his Sydney unit alight has called out to a magistrate in court.

It’s alleged 30 year old Keith Johnson - who also goes by the name Keith Petty - poured petrol all over his flat in Maroubra on Sunday night, then set it on fire using a cigarette lighter.

“I didn’t try to burn my unit for any reason except that people kept telling me to burn it out and hurt myself”, he told Magistrate Lisa Stapleton from the dock at Waverley Local Court.

Image: Daniel Sutton

He’s facing a string of serious charges including destroy/damage building by fire with intent to murder, damage property by fire/explosive, destroy /damage property with intent to endanger life, not keep firearm safe and possess unregistered firearm.

Ten Eyewitness News understands the fire followed a disagreement with neighbours over syringes and broken glass being left around the public housing unit block in Portland Crescent.

Image: Daniel Sutton

The NSW Police Bomb Disposal Unit was sent into the unit following the blaze, which caused extensive damage to furniture, sent clouds of smoke billowing out the windows, and forced the evacuation of units above his.

It’s understood officers recovered firearms parts during a search of the property.

Image: Supplied

Johnson was treated for minor cuts and grazes after his arrest on a street corner a short distance from his unit.

He didn’t apply for bail, and will remain behind bars until his next court appearance on September 28.