Man threatened to set wife on fire

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AN EX-SERVICEMAN threatened to set his wife on fire after accusing her of having an affair, a court has heard.

Stephen Cane, 24, of Caraway Road, Thetford, pinned Alex Cane to the bed and sprayed lighter fluid on her before repeatedly sparking a lighter after an argument.

Cane also said he would stab his wife and destroyed her wedding dress at their home in Darlington on March 25.

Cane, who served tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, pleaded guilty to criminal damage, resisting a constable and assault by beating at Bury St Edmunds Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

The incident took place in the early hours of the morning after Mrs Cane came back from a night out, said prosecutor Nikki Miller.

Cane accused his wife of cheating on him, calling her a ‘whore and a cheat’.

After reading the messages on her mobile phone he put his hands round her neck. She struggled free by kicking him away, said Mrs Miller.

He then said ‘I’ll show you what I’ll do to you’ before grabbing the lighter fluid.

Mrs Cane was uninjured.

In a statement to police, Cane said his wife treated him ‘like a mug’ by having an affair and regularly going out drinking until the early hours.

Claire Lockwood, in mitigation, said Cane was suffering from post-traumatic stress after his military service.

He recently left the forces after some ‘traumatic experiences’, according to Ms Lockwood. It was his first time in court.

Sentencing, magistrate Robin Howe said: “This was a paticularly unpleasant assault and one that we agree is above the custody threshold.”

However, Cane was given suspended sentences of four months in prison for the assault, two months for criminal damage and 14 days for resisting a Pc all suspended for one year.

He must also pay £85 costs and was given a one year supervision order.