Wells man dies from burns in fire allegedly set by his wife

Posted Jan. 20, 2009, at 8:58 p.m.

WELLS, Maine — A man who was doused with flammable liquid and set afire while he slept has died from his injuries in a Boston hospital, authorities said Tuesday.

An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday on the body of Christopher Spampinato, 39, who suffered burns over 85 percent of his body. He died last weekend at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Spampinato’s wife, Kimberly, allegedly doused him with gasoline in their bed and set him on fire using newspaper and a lighter early on Jan. 8, according to a police complaint. Fire damage was confined to their unit in the Harbor House apartment complex.

After turning herself in at the Wells Police Department after the fire, Kimberly Spampinato was charged with attempted murder and arson.

Deputy Attorney General Bill Stokes said the case would be presented to a grand jury, where elevated charges will be sought. Investigators from the Maine State Police and the state Attorney General’s Office will review the case this week.

Witnesses say Spampinato ran from his apartment and rolled in the snow to put out the fire. He was sitting on the apartment steps when firefighters and police arrived.

His death is classified as a homicide, the first of the year in Maine.

There’s no fear of Kimberly Spampinato going anywhere, Stokes said, because she is being held without bail in York County Jail in Alfred for violating bail conditions related to a domestic violence arrest in October.

Bail on the attempted murder and arson charges has been set at $750,000, according to jail officials. The court ordered a mental health evaluation for Kimberly Spampinato.

Attorney Amy McGarry was appointed to represent Kimberly Spampinato with co-counsel Sarah Churchill. Spampinato did not enter a plea at her arraignment on Jan. 9, and is scheduled for a status hearing in York County Superior Court in Alfred on March 13.

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