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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

The Kids Who Play With Fire

10/06/2011

Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service photos and footage will feature on a BBC documentary next week.

"Dean is hoping that by telling his story to the nation, he can prevent other young people from making the same mistakes."

Youth Intervention Officer, Lev Dubil

Wonderland – The Kids Who Play With Fire, will air on June 15th at 9.00pm on BBC 2, and documents the story of a 16 year old boy who deliberately started a serious fire in Staffordshire in 2003.

Dean Wood, who was 16 at the time, was sentenced to four years in prison after starting the fire, with petrol and a lighter, at the Queen Elizabeth Mercian High School in Tamworth, causing £1.73 million of damage.

The now 23-year-old will tell the nation his side of the story, including the lead up to the fire and its aftermath. Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service Youth Intervention Officer, Lev Dubil, delivered the Service’s ‘Xtinguish Programme’ to Dean as part of a referral order from the court.

Lev Dubil said: "The Xtinguish Programme is hard-hitting as it shows young individuals some of the consequences of playing with fire, including the effects of fire for victims, the community and the environment. Students also receive an overview of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service, relapse prevention sessions and are asked to write a letter of apology to their victim.

"Dean was referred to us by the Youth Offending Service and completed the 10 week programme in 2006.

"Dean is hoping that by telling his story to the nation, he can prevent other young people from making the same mistakes as he has in the past, and credit must be given to him for speaking out and admitting those mistakes."