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House Firebombed, Ventura Man Held

October 30, 1998|PAULA PISANI

A Ventura man is being held on $250,000 bail on suspicion of attempted murder and arson after a fire at his estranged girlfriend's house, authorities said Thursday.

Franklin Nixon, 51, was arrested following the 1:45 a.m. firebombing at the home in the 10500 block of North Dale Avenue in Oak View, authorities said.

One of the occupants of the house, David Ruble, told authorities that Nixon had been calling throughout the evening, threatening to kill Ruble and Nixon's former girlfriend, Gloria Leighty, who was also in the house. No one was injured.

Ruble told authorities that he was awakened early Thursday by an explosion in the front of the house. After discovering a fire in the hallway and another at the front door, Ruble and Leighty called for help.

When county firefighters arrived, they found the side of the house on fire, said Sheriff's Capt. Keith Parks.

Ventura police officers spotted Nixon in his car at Hemlock and Main streets about 2:15 a.m. and detained him until sheriff's deputies arrived. Parks said Nixon smelled of gasoline.

Parks said Nixon is suspected of setting two fires inside the home and three outside. Damage to the house is estimated at $5,000.

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