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New Jersey Woman Torched Man’s Home After 4 AM Booty Call Fizzled, Police Allege

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A New Jersey woman set fire to a man’s home after accepting a booty call invitation only to discover when she arrived that he had fallen asleep, police charge.

According to cops, Taija Russell, 29, torched Curtis Stokes’s home around 4 AM on August 4. Russell was arrested this week on several felony charges, including attempted homicide, aggravated arson, and aggravated assault.

As detailed in a probable cause affidavit, Russell had initially texted Stokes “hello,” to which he responded, “Bring ya ass.” But Stokes, 32, told cops that he fell asleep after inviting Russell over and that he “later awoke to his house on fire.” During a police interview, Stokes referred to Russell as a “side chick.”

Investigators say that when Russell (seen above) arrived at the residence, the snoozing Stokes did not hear her at the front door. He also did not respond to a series of text messages sent by Russell while she was outside his home.

In those texts, Russell complained, “You wasted my money to come out here.” She then allegedly sent a series of threats declaring, “U smoked,” “I see you wanna die,” and “I swear to god I hope you die.”

Unable to contact Stokes, cops say, Russell went to a nearby Conoco gas station, where she purchased lighter fluid, matches, and a cigarette lighter. She then returned to the property and allegedly set a fire outside the door.

As seen in the below photos, the resulting blaze destroyed the one-story home in Woodbury, a city just south of Camden and Philadelphia.

Stokes, who escaped the flames through a window, was transported to a local hospital “suffering from burns and smoke inhalation,” cops reported. The man’s dog was rescued from the home by firefighters.

Investigators quickly recognized signs of arson, like the presence of an accelerant, and launched a criminal investigation. Through interviews with Stokes and other witnesses, and a review of surveillance video, cops identified Russell as the alleged perpetrator.

Russell was busted Tuesday and booked into the Salem County jail, where she is being held without bail.

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http://www.thesmokinggun.com/buster/arson/booty-call-arson-609753

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