Melanie Smith Jailed For 30 Years For Five Fire Murders

14/08/2014 16:49 | Updated 22 May 2015

Melanie Smith jailed for 30 years for five fire murders

The woman who started a fire which killed five members of a neighbouring family has been told she must serve life for each murder with a minimum of 30 years.

Melanie Smith, 43, from Prestatyn, Denbighshire, was sentenced to life for each murder at Mold Crown Court.

Last week she was found guilty of five murders by deliberately starting a fire in a pushchair in a communal hallway.

Mr John Griffith Williams said setting fire to the pushchair was 'exceptional wickedness, almost unparalleled in its consequences'.

Smith, who was wearing a pink, grey and black jumper, was flanked by three female security officers in the dock.

Lee-Anna Shiers, 20, and her son Charlie, 15 months, died in the blaze in their top floor flat. Also killed were her nephew Bailey, four, and niece Skye, two, who were staying on a sleepover treat.

Lee-Anna's partner Liam Timbrell, 23, was rescued, and told a paramedic Smith was responsible, before he later died in hospital.

Melanie Smith jailed for 30 years for five fire murders

Smith was also convicted of threatening to burn another woman's home.The verdicts came after nearly 15 hours of deliberation by a jury of seven women and five men.

The court was told that Smith had argued with Ms Shiers because the mother-of-one left her son's pushchair in the downstairs communal hallway at the property.

Smith had previously made threats that she would set Ms Shiers' house on fire 'with you and your kids in it'.

On the day of the fire Smith had been drinking and set fire to the pushchair using a lighter.

Ms Shiers and her family were trapped in their upstairs flat.

Her defence counsel said there were two mitigating circumstances: her previous good history and no previous convictions for involvement with fire.


Suggest a correction