A Blaine man has been charged with first-degree arson and resisting arrest after he allegedly set fire to a mobile home and drew a knife on fire personnel who subsequently responded to the scene.
He has not been charged with attempted murder, even though the mobile home, when he set fire to it, was occupied by a woman who he was allegedly attempting to kill. Days earlier, he had allegedly made a comment about killing her. The woman was in the shower when the fire started and was able to escape the residence uninjured.
As of November 19, Spencer Langei, 29, remained in custody at Whatcom County Jail, according to Whatcom County’s online jail roster.
Shortly after 11 a.m. on November 2, residents of Fir Way in Blaine reported seeing a fire and a male behaving aggressively toward firefighters. Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) deputies were dispatched to the scene to assist North Whatcom Fire and Rescue firefighters, who were dealing with the combative subject who was hampering their response to the fire.
When WCSO deputies arrived at the scene, they helped restrain the male subject, who was later identified as Langei. A Blaine Police Department (BPD) officer also arrived to provide assistance. Langei was put in handcuffs, but after he thrashed around and attempted to twist a deputy’s hand, he was further restrained with leg irons and a spit mask.
The firefighters told the WCSO deputies that Langei had possibly set the fire intentionally, and had pulled out a sheathed seven-inch knife on the firefighters. The knife incident occurred after Langei, who wanted to rescue his cats, disobeyed instructions to stay away from the burning trailer.
“Langei was advised not to go near the house, but he went up to the house and attempted to crawl underneath the smoking trailer,” read a WCSO deputy’s report. “When Langei was pulled out, he pulled a knife from the small of his back, brandishing it towards the firemen, who disarmed him and held him on the ground.”
The female victim was still at the scene of the fire when deputies arrived. When the deputies interviewed her, they learned that she had been living with Langei for several months. She said that when she was about to take a shower that morning, Langei walked into the bathroom and said, “Today is the day it’s done.”
“He advised [her] to get the cats out of the house,” read a WCSO deputy’s report. “She said she saw her flare gun in his pants on the right side. Being concerned, [she] asked him not to do anything stupid. He responded, ‘It’s hell now. If I take your life and my life, then we will be happy in heaven.’”
After taking a five-minute shower, the woman walked into the kitchen to discover a large amount of smoke coming from underneath the sink area. She saw that Langei had a white bottle of lighter fluid in his hand and was spraying lighter fluid on the furniture and floor. When she asked him what he was doing, he discharged the flare gun in the direction of the living room floor, starting a fire in the living room in addition to the fire burning underneath the mobile home.
The woman extinguished the living room fire with the towel that she had wrapped herself in after her shower. She ran to the bedroom to put some clothes on and exited the residence uninjured. She then went to a neighbor’s house and used their garden hose to try and put the fire out.
In the course of being interviewed, she told WCSO deputies that Langei had made a comment on October 31 about killing her. The deputies connected her with Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services, and she spoke with an advocate over the phone. A domestic violence no-contact order has been made in the case, as well as an order to surrender weapons.
The Superior Court case number is 19-1-01327-37.