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Akron man charged with aggravated arson in last week's house explosion

Posted at 11:57 AM, Feb 15, 2017

Rodney Lee Hylton is facing charges of aggravated arson and arson in connection with an Akron house explosion that occurred on Tuesday, February 7 on the corner of South Hawkins and Cortland Avenue.

Hylton, 49, was inside the home, which he was renting, at the time of the explosion. Investigators said he was blown out of the house and was trying to hurt himself.

Neighboring homes were evacuated and the blast could be heard or felt from a few miles away.

"It was a big boom and our whole house shook, I mean it was terrible, very terrible,"  said Dezmond Robinson. 

According to a police report, multiple attempts were made to create an explosion by compromising gas lines and burners in the home.

Hylton was questioned on February 13 at Akron General Medical Center and admitted turning on gas burners on the stove and taking off a gas cap of the supply line to the old gas hot water heater, according to the report.

Information on Hylton's condition has not been released.

RELATED: Natural gas may have caused explosion that destroyed home in Akron