POLICE: Woman set group home on fire because she wanted cigarettes


A woman who set fire to the doorway of a group home when the owner of the group home refused to give her cigarettes was arrested on Friday night, according to a police report.

Hannah’s Place, in the 7300 block of Cameron Road, is a home for people with limited mental capacity. The group home’s owner told police the resident, Francine Almond, 55, became agitated when the owner refused to give Almond cigarettes. The owner told Almond to go out onto the front porch, and around 10 p.m. the owner noticed a flashing light through the window of the building. The owner went outside to find the front entrance on fire and put the flame out with water and saw Almond walking away from the building, the police report states.

The flames scorched the front door and melted plastic signs attached to the door. Almond left the scene and walked to a bus stop Coronado Hills Drive, later admitting to fire crews that she set the fire because she was angry, according to the police report.

Fire investigators expressed concerns that, had the fire spread, the residents of Hannah’s Place might have been unable to get out of the building due to their disabilities and medications they take.

Almond was arrested and charged with arson with the intent to damage a habitation. She is being held on $25,000 bail.

On Thursday evening, police arrested Edward Avalos on an arson charge for setting fire to his family’s home near the 5000 block of Sunset Trail.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

Community news: Artists sought for mini-murals in San Marcos

TRAVIS COUNTY NORTH AUSTIN Pitch competition for cookies Hopdoddy Burger Bar will host a friendly pitch competition in partnership with the Girl Scouts of Central Texas Entrepreneurship Program from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Hopdoddy, 2438 W. Anderson Lane. Two local Girl Scouts will have the chance to win Hopdoddy’s cookie sales for the seasonal...
Two dead, four injured in Williamson County crash Sunday night
Two dead, four injured in Williamson County crash Sunday night

9:45 p.m. update: Texas 95 in Williamson County has reopened following a two-vehicle collision that killed two people and sent four others to the hospital Sunday night, officials said. The Texas Department of Public Safety is leading the investigation into the fiery collision, which occurred on Texas 95 just south of the Bell County line. Authorities...
Texas AFL-CIO takes a pass on endorsing Beto O’Rourke for Senate
Texas AFL-CIO takes a pass on endorsing Beto O’Rourke for Senate

Miffed that they were being taken for granted, delegates at the Texas AFL-CIO COPE Convention voted Sunday not to endorse U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-El Paso, a no-show at their weekend gathering in Austin, in his bid to unseat U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. “Our members are increasingly feeling like, just because somebody has a D or an R...
Officer in Breaion King arrest facing discipline over new force case
Officer in Breaion King arrest facing discipline over new force case

An Austin police officer whose violent 2015 arrest of an elementary teacher received national attention and sparked reforms within the department is facing punishment that could include termination amid a new allegation involving excessive force. Officials are expected early this week to complete the disciplinary process for Officer Bryan Richter and...
NEW NOW: Woman shot in East Austin died in hospital, police say
NEW NOW: Woman shot in East Austin died in hospital, police say

7:15 p.m. update: A woman who was shot Sunday in East Austin has died in the hospital, according to Austin police. The Austin Police Department is now heading up a homicide investigation. At a press conference Sunday night, officer Justin Berry provided limited information about the crime and said no one was in custody. He said he did not have any...
More Stories