Man with incendiary device launches fireball into vacant P.E.I. house

Steve Sharratt
Published on February 2, 2016

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Devin Godin, 20, pleads guilty to setting fire to home on Central Street in Montague this past September

He didn't mean to do it, but a man fooling around with an incendiary device last fall on a neighbourhood street in Montague caused a house fire.

There was no one in the vacant home, and Devin Godin could have walked away and said nothing about the incident last September but something changed his mind because days later he went and confessed to police.

That's why he found himself in provincial court recently pleading guilty and sentenced to 45 days in jail. The 20-year-old admitted it was mid-afternoon on Sept. 19 and he had been fooling around with some incendiary devices when the fireball exploded and spread to a nearby house.

Court was told the accused was standing in the middle of the street and the unoccupied house on Central Street was quite close to the road. Within minutes, the empty house was starting to burn and a witness who saw smoke was calling the fire department.

Godin and some acquaintances were questioned by police at the time but denied any knowledge of the fire. The house was significantly damaged but not burned to the ground.

"He's being charged with mischief, but this borders on arson," said Crown prosecutor Nathan Beck.

Godin said it was never his intention to set the house on fire and was well aware that he was under a probation order not to have incendiary devices in his possession. Godin was given 30 days in jail for the mischief charge, 15 days for the breach of probation and 120 hours of community service.