NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - A woman's ex-boyfriend is accused of setting fire to a family's home where seven people were asleep inside.
Sheena Mount, her son, sister and four children were fast asleep at 5 a.m. Tuesday morning when they heard pounding on the door and those screams to get out of their Brill Street home.
"I actually was scared for my kids lives. Nothing like this ever happened to me before," Mount told FOX 29 Thursday.
Mount says police and firefighters quickly searched the house and pulled everyone out after neighbors called 9-1-1 to report the rear of the house engulfed in flames and people trapped inside. Four children ages 2 to 16 were rescued along with her 23-year-old son and her sister Camerin.
"This could have ended everybody's life, Everybody's in a second. Everybody's life," Mount said.
"This could have gone bad real fast," said Lt. Dennis Rosenbaum of Northeast Detectives.
The fire marshal and Northeast Detectives quickly determine this was arson. They focused in on Camerin's ex boyfriend, John Copes. Police say Copes poured an accelerant on the rear deck and set it on fire after Camerin ended their relationship.
"Obviously, he's still upset about this dispute with the female and we're worried for her safety. We need to get him in custody," Lt. Rosenbaum explained.
"My children is my life and that's all I'm really worried about," mount added.
investigators executed a search warrant at Copes residence on nearby Darrah Street. Sources say they recovered a gas can and some prior threatening text messages.
Sheena Mount meanwhile praised 15th District officers and firefighters from Engine 52 for their bravery.
"They saved several lives that day and four of them were children. You guys are heroes. I just want to let you all know. Thank you," she added.
No one was injured in the fire. Police say Copes is considered armed and dangerous. He has 17 prior arrests and is believed to be in the area.
Anyone with information about Copes whereabouts is asked to contact police.