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Police: Man tried to set himself on fire at ex’s house

Holly Fournier
The Detroit News

A Monroe Township man faces multiple charges after he allegedly threatened to set himself on fire while attempting to break into an ex-girlfriend’s Exeter Township home, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

Matthew Willis, 18, is charged with first-degree home invasion, second-degree arson, and aggravated stalking after he was arrested around 8:20 p.m. Tuesday outside his ex-girlfriend’s house on the 4200 block of Kane Road. The ex-girlfriend called 911 to report that Willis was “actively trying to get into her house and yelling that he was going to kill” her.

The victim has a personal protection order against Willis, according to officials.

The woman also called her parents during the attempted break-in, officials said. The couple rushed to the scene, arriving shortly before sheriff’s deputies.

Meanwhile, Willis allegedly gained entry to the attached garage and attempted to access the home through an interior door. The suspect then allegedly poured gasoline on himself and the front door of the residence, threatening to set himself and the home on fire.

The victim’s parents arrived on scene and detained Willis just before deputies arrived, officials said.

The sheriff’s office continued the investigation via interviews and collecting “numerous” items of evidence, officials said. Willis was arraigned Thursday in the First District Court, where he received a $500,000 bond.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Detective Jeff Smith at (734) 240-7548.

(313) 223-4616