Police: 16-year-old charged with attempted murder after setting home on fire with parents inside

Sheriff: This is a 'cold, calculated plot'

LIBERTY TWP., Ohio -- A 16-year-old was arrested and charged with attempted murder after police say he tried to burn down his residence in Liberty Township with his parents inside.

Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones said he hasn't seen anything like this in his 40 years of law enforcement.

The incident happened about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 7100 block of Tarragon Court, according to police.

Investigators say they found the 50-year-old father of the Lakota West High School student outside of the home after he jumped from a second-story window to escape the flames.

Liberty Township fire crews rescued the suspect's 56-year-old mother from her second-story bedroom.

You can listen to the 911 call for the fire below.

Jones said this was a "cold, calculated plot."

Officers say they found records and journals written by the teen depicting how he was going to set fire to the home. The journal included information on how he would tie the door shut to his parent's bedroom so they couldn't escape.

Both were taken to West Chester Medical Center. The suspect's father suffered a broken leg and his mother received treatment and was released after suffering minor injuries," according to police.

After investigators spoke with their son, he was arrested and charged with two counts of attempted murder and one count of aggravated arson. Jones told 9 On Your Side reporter Jay Warren the suspect has shown "no signs of remorse."

Warren also spoke with a teacher and the suspect's classmate at Lakota West.

The teacher, who wished to remain anonymous, described the suspect as a "straight 'A' student" who is taking Advanced Placement psychology, honors physics and honors pre-calculus. They also said he is involved in the music programs at the school.

Lakota West student Dominique Lewis described him as a "good guy."

"He seems like he was a good guy he didn't talk a lot a lot but when I talk to him he seemed like he was good I wasn't expecting anything bad out of him," the student said.

Lewis also described him as someone who wasn't isolated at school.

The suspect was taken to the Butler County Juvenile Detention Center. Jones said he will try to work with the prosecutor to have the teen tried in court as an adult.

9 On Your Side reporter Tom McKee contributed to this report.

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