Report: Accused arsonist yelled 'I'm sorry!'

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT)--- The Knoxville Fire Department was called to an apartment building fire just before midnight in South Knoxville Tuesday.

On Wednesday, WVLT News learned Caleb Alex Jones was charged with arson in the incident.

According to records, Jones told investigators that he used a grill lighter to set his mattress on fire, igniting the blaze that endangered multiple residents who lived in the building.

Records show a neighbor called 911 and reported that she saw Jones screaming "I'm sorry! I'm sorry!" to his boyfriend. According to a police report, the witness said the boyfriend responded by calling Jones' mother and said, "Your son just burned everything we own."

However, WVLT News spoke with Anthony Green Wednesday night, who identified himself as Jones' stepfather. Green said he was the one present the night of the fire and that Jones does not have a boyfriend. Green told WVLT News the neighbor was either mistaken about his relationship to Jones, or the police report was inaccurate.

Green said most other details in the report seemed to be true. He told WVLT News his stepson has had, "Some mental instabilities and we've tried to get him help. He's been at Helen Ross Mcnab and came home the night before the fire happened."

Green said he wasn't sure why the fire was started, "He told me he didn't know why he did it. He said he didn't understand why he did it, he's been having anxiety and depression attacks."

Jones was taken into custody and charged with Aggravated Arson.

When firefighters arrived they said they found smoke coming from one of the buildings at Cherokee Ridge Apartments.

Firefighters said the building has 12 apartments and that flames were coming from one of the units when they arrived.

Firefighters got everyone out the "G" building of the apartment complex by banging on the doors.

Crews were able to make their way into the apartment on fire and extinguish the flames, but smoke flooded the building.

The Knoxville Fire Department said no one was hurt in the fire at Cherokee Ridge Apartments on Woodlawn Pike.

The fire department said 8 people received temporary assistance after the fire.