Man Breaks Into Burning House to Save Fountain Valley Woman

Associated Press

A 28-year-old woman from Fountain Valley, Calif., apparently near death as her mother’s home here burned around her, was saved by a man who broke through a door after seeing smoke at about 3 a.m. Sunday.

David Jones, 30, and his wife went to the burning house, pounding on doors and windows trying to wake anyone inside.

Jones said he had seen two cars in the driveway and believed that there were people inside the burning house, so he broke through a sliding-glass door to the master bedroom.


Jones, who was barefoot, plunged into the burning room.

“It was pitch black,” Jones said, and the smoke stung at his eyes, but he felt his way to the bed.

There he found Julie Layton, who was watching the home for her vacationing mother. “I shook her and I said ‘We got to get out of here, there’s a fire.’ ”

Jones said he put the woman’s arm around his shoulder and helped her out of the house. As he brought Layton to the front yard, she recovered enough to tell him that she had been alone in the house.

Layton suffered from smoke inhalation but no other injuries. She was treated and released at Chandler Regional Hospital.

“I’m glad that we were there because another 10 minutes and it would have been all over for her, “ Jones said.

Chandler Fire Department investigator Lou Carlucci said the fire started in a couch and may have been ignited by a smoldering cigarette. The house was destroyed, and damage was estimated at $70,000.