Ex-NHLer Stephen Peat admits causing Langley fire

SURREY — A former National Hockey League player has admitted to causing a fire at his father’s Langley home earlier this year.

Stephen Boyd Peat, 35, made a brief appearance in provincial court in Surrey on Wednesday morning, where he pleaded guilty to a charge of arson by negligence.

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Peat was initially charged with arson in relation to an inhabited property, to which he pleaded not guilty, and arson damaging property.

About 10:30 p.m. on March 17, firefighters were called to a fire at a home in Surrey. The homeowner, Walter Peat, was in bed when the fire started but escaped. A basement suite tenant was not home at the time.

Firefighters put out the blaze, but the house and vehicles in the driveway were badly damaged.

Police were called to investigate the fire because a passerby saw a man lighting the fire and tried unsuccessfully to stop him.

Investigators learned that there was a “domestic dispute” between Walter and Stephen Peat which began that afternoon and was renewed later in the evening.

Stephen Peat turned himself in to police on March 19.

He was granted bail on March 23 and is not in custody.

A pre-sentence report was ordered for Peat and sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 18. The maximum sentence for arson by negligence is five years in prison.

Peat played 130 games for the Washington Capitals from 2001 to 2006. He last played in the NHL in 2007 as a right winger for the Carolina Hurricanes in 2007.

He also played in the B.C. Hockey League, Western Hockey League, American Hockey League and United Hockey League during his career.

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