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Man accused of trying to kill family back in court June 25

Jerry Ray Follett

Jerry Ray Follett

CAMP VERDE — A Rimrock man accused of trying to light a home on fire with his family inside is due back in court next week for a settlement conference and possible change of plea.

Jerry Ray Follett, 35, is scheduled to appear before Yavapai Superior Court Judge Michael Bluff Friday, June 25, 3 p.m.

Follett’s charges include attempted first-degree murder, attempted arson of an occupied structure, disorderly conduct with a weapon, endangerment and child abuse. According to court documents, Follett became upset during the early morning hours of Oct. 17 of last year.

In March, Follett was found competent to face charges after an evaluation and restoration process.

Documents say Follett poured gasoline inside a home and on a family member and tried to light that person on fire at about 2:30 a.m. Oct. 17.

Several deputies were dispatched to the home, located in the 5200 block of North Dave Wingfield Road. The initial call to YCSO came from a third-party family member, who had received a text that Follett was pouring gas on a trailer and was attempting to light it on fire with his family inside.

Another family member, who was staying in a separate nearby trailer, told deputies he heard loud music coming from Follett’s trailer and saw Follett pouring gas on both trailers and the surrounding ground. One of the deputies who responded had spoken by phone with Follett, who said he was upset about several personal issues and mentioned suicide during the conversation before ending his call with the deputy.

Follett had also been drinking and had threatened “suicide by cop,” a report said.

Documents say Follett’s wife and two daughters, ages 13 and 14, were inside the trailer. A family member told deputies Follett locked himself and everyone inside the trailer while threatening to burn it down.

Deputies later found the interior of the trailer had also been doused with gas. Follett had also poured gas on the family member while dousing that trailer and the ground below, documents say.

Both daughters fell into the gasoline when trying to leave, but were forced back inside by their father. He continued to say that he was going to kill everyone, the family told deputies.

At one point, Follett’s family was able to escape to the front yard. Follett was also waving a silver-colored machete. He wrapped a towel, soaked in gasoline, around the blade and attempted to light it using a stove top burner, but it would not ignite, the report said.

YCSO said Follett left before deputies arrived, telling his family he was never coming back. Deputies discovered he was hiding across the street and convinced him to surrender.

The report said the property and trailer had an overwhelming odor of gasoline. The condition inside the trailer was termed “horrendous” in the report, with feces and urine on the floor along, along with large piles of trash.

YSCO says Follett “essentially admitted’ to the account provided by family members.

Deputies learned that earlier, Follett had a confrontation with his wife, and pushed her to the ground. The Department of Child Safety was notified about the incident for follow-up.

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