A jealous man stuffed a suspected love rival's underpants in a toaster after he found them at his ex-girlfriend’s flat, a court heard. Dean Buxton, 29, started a fire by deliberately burning the man’s underpants. Buxton also slashed the woman’s bed with a knife, Plymouth Crown Court heard. He admitted arson and burglary with intent to cause damage when he appeared for a trial.
Buxton continues to deny the more serious count of arson reckless as to whether life was endangered, a plea accepted by the prosecution.
He sneaked into the woman’s flat in Crownhill, Plymouth, Devon, while she was out on October 11.
Buxton found a pair of underpants belonging to another man at the flat and set fire to them by stuffing them into a toaster in the kitchen.
Two fire crews had to force their way into the flat at 11pm that Sunday night.
Two firefighters donned breathing apparatus to tackle the minor blaze and cleared the smoke with a large fan.
Buxton, from the Pennycross area of Plymouth, admitted causing damage to the £25 toaster and then slashing the woman’s bed with a knife.
Buxton, who has been in prison since the offence, was remanded in custody while a probation officer prepares a report on his background.
Recorder Nicholas Hall told him: “This was to a trial of the relatively grave allegation of arson reckless as to whether life endangered.
You have pleaded guilty to arson, which is not in the same category. It would be appropriate for the sentencing court to know a little more about you.
All options are open to the court including custody.”
Nigel Hall, for the Crown Prosecution Service, said a restraining order would be requested to keep Buxton away from the woman when he is sentenced on April 8.