CARMICHAEL (CBS13) — Police say a man went on a rampage, started fires inside of his home and even tried to burn his own mother alive.
Investigators say the makeshift flame thrower the man is accused of using could’ve easily been used as a murder weapon.
We spoke with the man who’s being called a hero. He doused the flames of a suspect who may have killed his mother if he hadn’t stepped in.
“The tip of the flame was maybe three feet from her,” said Blu Robles.
Blu says his stepson, 47-year-old Shane Sotelo, tried to set his own mom on fire.
“I heard it. I was standing right there and it just went woo,” said Blu.
Blu was in front of their Carmichael home this weekend watering. He says Sotelo got into a heated argument with his mom and another family friend, grabbed a tank, a lighter and aerosol can and turned the propane tank into a flamethrower.
“He was saying, ‘I’m going to light you up on fire.’ That’s all he was saying,” said Blu.
Wearing only a bath robe, his nearly 70-year-old mother she was trying to dodge the flames, begging her son to back off.
“And she was telling him, ‘Turn it off, turn it off, what are you doing?’ And he said, ‘I told you I was going to set you on fire,” said Blu.
Blu says the family friend ran from the house screaming, “He’s trying to set us on fire.”
Blu says he ran inside in the house into the living room, sprayed the suspect and the flames.”
The only thing actually burning was a comforter on a nearby couch. Not much of it was left.
“She was scared. She was scared because she had already seen he caught something on fire and she was next,” said Blu.
Sotelo was tackled and the propane tank was taken from him.
His mom is okay.
“He’s disrespectful. He’s disrespectful. She’s nice to him, pays his bills and helps him out all the time.
Sotelo has a long wrap sheet that includes drugs and weapons charges. He’s being held on $230,000 bail. He’s being charged with assault with a deadly weapon.