Residents question what sparked blaze that gutted vacant house

Residents question what sparked blaze that gutted vacant house
(Source: Fred Gamble/KSLA News 12)
(Source: Fred Gamble/KSLA News 12)

TEXARKANA, AR (KSLA) - A blaze broke out Thursday morning destroying a vacant Texarkana, Ark., home; the same house police conducted a drug raid a month ago.

Now, residents in the area are suspicious of what sparked the fire.

Neighbors on the scene watched and took video of firefighters as they arrived around 6 a.m. to the fire.

When the smoke cleared, the only thing left in the 200 block of Georgian Terrance was the brick walls of the structure.

"Especially with the amount of fire damage it is, we are having to work through and come up with an ignition source and point of origin right now," said Texarkana, Ark., Fire Marshall Stephen Johnson.

A concerned neighbor, Marylou Nelson, says the early morning blaze raises red flags after police made a visit to the resident last month during a drug raid.

"The SWAT team came out about a month ago and closed the house so the house had been vacant for about a month," said Nelson.

During last month's raid, police arrested 29-year-old Catherine Cody and 29year-old Meagan Burrowes for possession of meth.

The city code enforcement officer tagged the house not safe for habitation.

"The house being vacant that is a concern no one is there to leave a light on or a candle burning or some cooking on top of the range," said Johnson.

Johnson explains samples have been taken from the scene, but at this time, he is not saying if this fire was connected with the drug raid last month.

"It is sad. I hate to see something like this happen in our neighborhood or any place else," said Nelson.

The fire marshal said it could take weeks before getting results on the samples taken at the scene.

However, investigators will continue conducting interviews to see what caused the blaze.

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