Dad tells of terrifying firebomb attack

A father has spoken of his terror after a firebomb was thrown into the house where five members of his family were sleeping.

Ayub Hussain this week spoke for the first time of his family’s ordeal as police made a fresh appeal to track down the culprits.

Mr Hussain and his wife were asleep in the front room of their Dewsbury home when a petrol bomb was thrown through the window.

The brave 60-year-old immediately picked up the plastic container to try to throw it away but not before flames licked up his left arm, leaving him with second degree burns.

Mr Hussain said: “I can’t understand why someone would do this to me and my family. They tried to kill all of us.”

Mr Hussain, who has no idea who was responsible for the attack, pleaded for anyone with information to come forward. “We have lived for 11 years in this house, and 33 years in this area,” Mr Hussain added. “We have no problems with anybody.

“All the Asian people, all the English people, we are all family – we have no arguments with anybody.”

A large stone was thrown through the window of the house in Moorlands Avenue West around 2.15am on November 28.

Mr Hussain said: “I heard a big bang, a big noise. I stood straight up and I saw the firebomb coming in. It happened so quickly, I picked it up and the flames caught my arm. By that time there were flames all over the room.”

He and his wife Zubeda, 50, ran from the room, shutting the door behind them. They called the fire brigade and the police and their three children, aged 30, 27 and 26, along with their daughter-in-law, all escaped.

Mr Hussain said: “It could’ve been a lot worse if we were not in that room – it’s completely destroyed. A three-piece furniture suite, TV, videos, laptop, even the plaster was cracked. All in 10 or 15 minutes.

“If it had been another 10 minutes it could have gone all over the house. Mentally we are disturbed, but we are coping.”

Mr Hussain was taken to Pinderfields Hospital for burns treatment. He has been unable to work as a driver taking disabled children to school for Kirklees Council, but a friend has stepped in to help.

Mr Hussain thinks a single culprit came down a ginnel by the side of the house, and escaped the same way.

Kirklees Council has placed a camera in the alley for eight weeks, after which the case will be reviewed to see whether it is necessary long-term. A council officer visited Mr Hussain to select the best place for the camera.

Mr Hussain added: “I think culprit planned it, knowing they could escape up the ginnel unseen. We want a camera or a street light for the future safety of people – something like this could easily happen again.”

Det Sgt Matt Hawker of Dewsbury CID said: “This was an extremely serious incident which could have easily led to fatal consequences and a murder investigation.

“The mindset of someone to break a window and pour accelerant into a family home before igniting it and walking away leaves me cold and those responsible need to be identified and brought to justice.”

Anyone with information should contact Kirklees CID on 101 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.