A DEPRESSED man who set fire to his Nelson mid terraced home left an apparent suicide note, a court has heard.
Andrew Trickett had composed a hand-written note, part of which read "One way to solve a problem". Another phrase was "I did this to myself". He set fire to a double bed at his rented home on Dalton Street and also made a 999 call to the fire brigade. Preston Crown Court heard that a collection of photographs were found laid out on the settee. Forty-one-year old Trickett, who still lives at the same address, had pleaded guilty to a charge of simple arson over the events on July 30th last year. Miss Emma Kehoe (prosecuting) said the defendant made the emergency call on his mobile phone while still in the house. The fire was confined to a double bed in an upstairs bedroom. A mattress, sheets and a duvet had all caught fire. A sergeant spoke to Trickett at the scene. The defendant initially said he had spilled some turps while painting and that a fire had started when he lit a cigarette. The officer found the hand-written note which he interpreted to be a suicide note. Following his arrest, it was noticed at a police station that he smelled strongly of drink. Trickett went on to tell police that he had become depressed. He had separated from his wife and was on anti-depressants, awaiting counselling at the time. He admitted drinking large quantities of vodka on a daily basis and that he had drunk vodka that evening prior to the fire being started. Miss Kehoe added: "The conclusion of the investigating fire officer was that it had been started purposely and part of a suicide attempt by the defendant". Mr Wayne Jackson (defending) said what happened had been some form of a cry for help. The defendant now had a new relationship. Mr Jackson told the court "There does seem to be some stability back in his life. He needs some guidance and assistance if he is to build on the progress he has made." Judge Simon Newell adjourned the case so that the probation service can assess Trickett for a possible alcohol treatment programme. The defendant was remanded on bail to a fresh sentencing hearing of June 24th at Burnley Crown Court.