Minnesota man kills daughter, 22, in a fit of rage by setting fire to her mobile home after argument
John Sean Newport, 46, faces charges of second-degree murder and could get up to 40 years in prison for the death of Jamey Newport.
PAYNESVILLE, MINNESOTA: A Minnesota man has been accused of killing his adult daughter by torching her home following an argument.
John Sean Newport, 46, has been arrested and charged in connection with the death of his daughter Jamey Newport, 22, after officers responded to a home on 420 Minnie St., Paynesville, just before 7 pm on July 23, after a 911 call from the latter, reported the St. Cloud Times.
She told the dispatcher that someone, later identified as her father, was dumping gasoline on her mobile home and was going to start a fire. Just before the dispatcher lost contact with her on the call, she began "screaming, yelling for help, and saying she can't get out," according to a criminal complaint.
Paynesville Police Officer Thomas Fread was the first to arrive at the scene and found that he could not enter through the front door because of the thick, black smoke. He then got a fire extinguisher from his squad car and went to the rear door, where he heard cries of help coming from inside.
He then "kicked open the door and used the fire extinguisher in hopes to knock down the flames," but retreated as the home went up in flames.
The criminal complaint states that, at this point, Fread noticed John Newport had broken a window and was yelling at someone inside the home. He "appeared to run in the front door, immediately exited, and was again attempting to enter the home through the window" before he was restrained to prevent any further injuries.
The fire was only extinguished after the Paynesville Fire Department arrived at the scene. Jamey Newport was then rescued from the home but was ultimately pronounced dead at the Paynesville Hospital.
The Star Tribune reported that an autopsy conducted by the Midwest Medical Examiner's Office concluded that she died of "inhalation of products of combustion" and ruled the manner of death as a homicide.
A preliminary investigation found that John Newport had been in an argument with his daughter around the time of the fire and that he had recently made a Facebook post where he "expressed his intent to burn down the mobile home."
They also uncovered evidence of fuel inside the home, and a gas, normally found outside near a lawnmower, was near the front door. There was also a lighter on the ground just outside the home.
John Newport, who had reportedly lived in the mobile home park for a couple of years, was first taken to St. Cloud Hospital for treatment, and then transported to the Stearns County Jail.
He appeared at the Stearns County District Court on July 25 and was charged with one count of second-degree murder. If convicted, he faces a maximum of 40 years behind bars.
Judge Thomas Hayes set the bail at $2 million without conditions and $1 million with conditions. He is scheduled to make his next appearance in court on August 5. The case is still being investigated by the Paynesville Police Department, Stearns County Sheriff's Office, Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, Minnesota State Fire Marshall Division, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.