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Care worker appeals for help to catch arsonists who set her car on fire

PUBLISHED: 14:42 15 May 2020 | UPDATED: 15:10 16 May 2020

Police are treating the incident on Fredrick Road as arson. Photo: Theresa Rushmer

Police are treating the incident on Fredrick Road as arson. Photo: Theresa Rushmer

Archant

A keyworker whose car erupted into flames is urgently appealing for witnesses to come forward.

Police are treating the incident on Fredrick Road as arson. Photo: Theresa RushmerPolice are treating the incident on Fredrick Road as arson. Photo: Theresa Rushmer

Theresa Rushmer, 56, from Gorleston, said she and her husband awoke to find that her blue Nissan was on fire at 1.10am on Thursday May 14.

The couple, who live at the bottom end of Fredrick Road, near Church Road, said they heard a loud “boom” as the car’s tyre exploded, with smoke and heat damage rendering the car unusable.

Police said the fire is being treated as arson.

Ms Rushmer said: “There wasn’t enough forensic evidence at the time to say it was definitively arson.

“Police and the fire brigade floated the idea it could be an electrical fault, but the fire began at the rear of the vehicle which is unusual if an electrical fault is to blame.

Police are treating the incident on Fredrick Road as arson. Photo: Theresa RushmerPolice are treating the incident on Fredrick Road as arson. Photo: Theresa Rushmer

“I’m desperately hoping it was an electrical fault but it’s very suspicious if it was, as my little car has always served me well and I’ve never had any problems with it.

“Nothing seemed amiss when I drove it home at 10pm just a few hours before.

“You don’t want to think that somebody has set your car alight for no reason at all, but maybe that is what has happened.

“Nobody was following me home or anything so I can’t imagine who must have done it.”

Ms Rushmer, who was sleeping after her 15-hour shift as a care worker at Broadlands Residential Home in Oulton Broad, said the whole ordeal was “terrifying” and that she had not been able to sleep after fire crews left her home at 1.30am

“It’s really not what you need after a long shift - to hear your husband shouting upstairs that my lovely little car has gone up in flames.

“The worst part was that we couldn’t do anything about it - we just had to stand there and watch it burn.”

Ms Rushmer said that in the meantime she had been given a seven-day courtesy car and was trying to pull the money together to get a replacement one.

Police are investigating and have asked any witnesses to call 101 quoting crime reference 36/31393/20.


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