Police: Man set ex-girlfriend's home on fire, texted photo of it

Posted: Updated:
HILLSBOROUGH -

A Somerset County man allegedly set fire to his ex-girlfriend's home while eight people slept inside and then texted a photo of the burning home to a friend.

Somerset County prosecutors say 34-year-old Patrick Hammond, of Somerville, is charged with arson and attempted murder. 

Hammond allegedly set fire to the Hillsborough home around 12:40 a.m. Sunday.

The residents, who range in age from 4 to 64 years old, were able to safely escape. But the fire severely damaged the home.

Prosecutors say Hammond ran off but was less than a mile away from the home when officers found him about an hour later. He eventually was taken to a hospital for an evaluation because he was acting erratically at police headquarters.

It was not clear if Hammond had retained an attorney who could comment on his behalf.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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