A VAN was set alight after arsonists smashed their way in with a brick.
Police are investigating after the damaged was caused to a flat bed Ford Transit van between 8.30pm last night and 4am today in Marlowe Place, Houghton.
Officers say the offenders approached the van, threw a brick through the passenger window and set fire to the inside of the cab.
Firefighters from Rainton Bridge Fire Station were called to the street at 3.30am, where they found the van’s well alight.
Crew members wore breathing apparatus as they used hose reels to put out the fire.
A nearby fence was also damaged by the heat.
Any witnesses or anyone with information is asked to contact police on 101, extension 69191, quoting log number 131 030914 or the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.