Teen charged with arson in blaze that destroyed $30G classroom
That's how Marc Reech, chief of the arson division in the Louisiana Fire Marshal's Office, described a 14-month investigation that ended with a teenager being booked on a charge of "simple arson" in connection with a fire that destroyed a $30,000 portable classroom at New Sarpy Elementary School in 2005.
The teen's name was not released because he was a juvenile when the fire was set. Because the building was self insured by the St. Charles Parish School Board, it was replaced with school money.
Investigators with the Fire Marshal's Office and the St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office pursued leads that trickled in over 14 months before they zeroed in on the suspect in Reserve, in St. John the Baptist Parish.
The teenager was taken to St. Charles Parish, where he was booked and released to his parents' custody, Reech said.
The weekend fire destroyed a building at the rear of the campus. The building was self-insured by the St. Charles Parish School Board and cost $30,000 to replace, school system spokeswoman Rochelle Cancienne said.
School officials have since installed a security camera to help monitor suspicious activity and prevent arson, vandalism or break-ins in the future.
Reech credited Sgt. Roanne Sampson of the St. Charles Sheriff's Office with keeping the investigation on track.
She was instrumental in helping to locate witnesses, some of whom had left the area.
The alleged arsonist reportedly left a party near New Sarpy Elementary about 10 p.m. and walked through the schoolyard. Deputies found a door to the building open, Reech said.
The fire was set inside a classroom with "an open-flame device," a term fire experts often use in official reports when talking about a "cigarette lighter."
No accelerants such as kerosene or gasoline were used, he said.
Respond to this story at: email@example.com
Subscribe Today and Save!!!
St. Charles Herald-Guide is an award-winning newspaper that covers all aspects of St. Charles Parish - from schools and parish government news to social events, features on our local residents and sports.
Order your subscription today!
When it comes to insurance, the catastrophe can linger long after the devastation...
Darrington Sentimore once spent his time taking down quarterbacks and running backs...
The goal is to put a duck call (pink or camo) and a fishing pole – anything that’s...
Lutcher coach Tim Detillier is fond of saying “they should collect the money on the...
When Cameron’s mother put a stethoscope to Jamie Napolitano’s chest and heard her...
Molly the pony is a Sea Biscuit kind of story that offers the hope that anyone can...
When you visit Dr. Joshua C. Patella and his team at Patella Dental, you are our top priority. Our entire general dentistry team is dedicated to providing you with the personalized, gentle care that you deserve. We believe that teeth should look and feel
Former college star turns injury into new career with Jefferson Parish - 3136 views
Darrington Sentimore once spent his time taking down quarterbacks and running backs at the prep, college and NFL level.