LEICESTER —A family of seven targeted in an arson attack in the United Kingdom are in fear for their lives after a second attack on a neighbouring home.
An unoccupied terraced home in Heyford Road, Braunstone, Leicester, was deliberately set on fire late last Thursday night.
The latest blaze comes a month after arsonists set fire to a storeroom at the back of the Muteera family’s home, two doors away.
The family were watching television in the lounge at the front of their home and were forced to flee the blaze on Tuesday, October 29.
Edmore and Christine Muteera say their seven-year-old twins have not been able to sleep properly since the attack, and fear their home will be targeted again following the latest incident.
Christine, 45, a night care assistant, said: “The children keep asking if they are going to die.
“They ask if they are going to be killed and are asking what we have done to people.”
The family say they have been subjected to a string of petty vandalism attacks since moving to the three-bedroom council property four years ago.
They say they have been on a council waiting list for a four-bedroom property since 2011, but are now desperate to move following the latest incident.
Unemployed Muteera, 56, who is originally from Zimbabwe and has lived in Britain for 10 years, said: “We are living here in fear.
“When the fire was started in the store room at the back of the house there were a lot of flames.
“A neighbour came banging on our door to tell us about it.
“We were in the lounge at the front of the house and didn’t know anything about it.
“The twins had been getting better, but this latest fire has triggered their fears again. We are desperate to move and stressed with this issue.
“There is no peace at all for us.”
A crew from Leicester’s Western fire station had to break into the vacant property to deal with the latest fire, which left the terraced house severely smoke-logged.
Neighbours said a woman living there had moved out several weeks ago and there were reports of youths seen in the garden of the property before the fire broke out.
A Leicester City Council spokesman said: “We are continuing to work with the police and fire brigade to investigate these incidents.
“We are also working closely with the Muteera family and have put them in the second-highest priority category available to enable them to move quickly.
“However, they have so far only bid selectively for homes in areas which are already in high demand.
“They need to be bidding for four-bedroom properties citywide to give themselves the best chance of finding a suitable property.”
A Leicestershire Police spokeswoman said officers were investigating the possibility the two fires were linked.