'Hero' charged with murder in 2 fire deaths

May 14, 2011 - 9:43 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indianapolis man hailed as a hero for trying to rescue two people from a fire at his home is now accused of setting the blaze.

Gary Allen was in jail Saturday on two preliminary counts of murder after being arrested Friday. Jail officials could not be reached so it was not clear whether the 32-year-old Allen had an attorney.

Tuesday's fire killed 63-year-old Anna Richards. Her 47-year-old son, Jerry Richards, who used a wheelchair, died Thursday from fire-related injuries.

Fire officials say Allen admitted causing the fire to get back at the landlord because the residents of the home were being evicted.

Indianapolis Fire Cmdr. Cliff Johnson told The Indianapolis Star there was "a conflict between the family and the landlord" and Allen "just wanted to cause some damage."