‘Revenge’ woman is found guilty

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A WOMAN faked threatening messages and started a fire in which her boyfriend almost died, a jury has decided.

On Tuesday, Sharon Mann, 27, was found guilty of attempting to pervert the course of justice between August 2009 and February 2010 by making false allegations to police.

Mann, of Mill Street, Mildenhall, was also convicted of arson being reckless as to whether life would be endangered on December 15 last year. She was found not guilty of an alternative offence of arson with intent to endanger life.

She has been remanded in custody until she reappears at Ipswich Crown Court for sentencing in the week beginning December 5.

The court heard last week how Mann had claimed that threatening text messages sent to her mobile and that of her boyfriend, Jonathan Horridge, were from former lover Peter Crotty.

But the jury was told that Mr Crotty’s phone had been in the possession of the police at the time the messages were sent.

After Mann refused to give evidence in court, the jury heard a statement from her to police admitting that she had lied about receiving one message from Mr Crotty but insisted that he had sent the rest.

Mann had also burnt down the flat that she and Mr Horridge lived in at George Lambton Avenue, Newmarket, leaving him trapped inside while she escaped out of a window.

Mr Horridge had to be rescued by firefighters and was in intensive care for a week, with doctors inserting a tube into his throat to help him breathe.

Ian Bowell, fire officer, told the court that following investigations he believed the blaze had been started deliberately in a hallway.

She was also responsible for graffiti and other damage at the flat, according to Andrew Thompson, prosecuting.

Mr Thompson told the court that Mann’s motives were unclear but it was probable they had been for ‘revenge, sympathy or attention’.

Jurors were told that Mann’s relationship with Mr Crotty had ended in ‘acrimonious circumstances’.

Mr Horridge told the court he was ‘gutted’ when he found out the threatening texts were being sent by Mann.