Brockton Man Arrested In Break-In, Assault, Arson

brockton arson house fire ben parker

Fire damage on the outside of the home on Highland Street. (Ben Parker/WBZ NewsRadio 1030)

BROCKTON (WBZ-AM) -- Police arrested a man they say broke into the multi-family home where his estranged wife was staying, assaulted her, and set the home on fire.

The man, identified as Matthew Eldredge, 35 allegedly broke into the home on Highland Street and assaulted his estranged wife, who was staying there with the landlords.

They say he returned hours later to pour gasoline on the outside of the home and light a match. 

Eldredge who was arraigned Tuesday, is currently held without bail.

Landlord Warren Dougan told WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Ben Parker what happened when the suspect came in around midnight.

"He come in the bedroom and he started yelling and screaming," Warren said. "Woke me up, I was asleep, so was she. He punched her in the face, and he looked at me to say, well you're a guy, I'm not going to fight with you."

Nicole, who said she married the suspect in September, said she knew things weren't over even after he left.

"I knew it wasn't over, because he punched me in my face and he was holding me down," she said. "He was saying, 'See what you're doing?'"

Dougan's wife Kay called police after the man broke in--but the suspect left before officers arrived.

"On the way out, he said, 'All of you, I'm going to get all of you,' and then the next thing, he was out here pouring gas on everything, and lit a match."

Kay, who uses oxygen, said she was scared when she saw flames coming out from under the door.

"I couldn't call 911, I was freaking out so bad," she said.

Warren said he used a garden hose to knock down some of the fire, which was estimated to have caused around $40,000 in damage.

Kay and Nicole were taken to the hospital, but released a short time later. Kay said she hopes the suspect gets the help he needs.

Nicole said she has just one goal now.

"This is a home, and it's been my home for many years prior to this," she said. "We need to make it a home again."

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Ben Parker reports

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