LULING, La. (WVUE) - The state fire marshal said a woman tried to set her apartment on fire with her children still inside.
Cassandra Jones, 39, was booked into the St. Charles Parish Jail on Thursday (Aug. 1) for one count of aggravated arson.
Investigators said in the morning hours of July 23, the Luling Fire Department contacted the State Fire Marshal’s Office to assist in determining the origin and cause of an apartment fire located in the 100 block of Lakewood Drive in Luling.
The damage was limited to extensive smoke and soot effects at the Parc Lakewood Apartments, the state fire marshal said.
An area firefighter, who also manages the complex, heard screaming coming from the unit above the complex office and discovered two children yelling for help from the balcony with smoke exiting the window behind them.
The firefighter was able to assist four children in total, ranging in age from six to 14-years-old, out of the unit without injury. Two tenants of a nearby unit also escaped without harm.
Jones, the mother of the children, was also located in the affected unit and had attempted to prevent the children’s rescue. She was eventually detained by the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office and transported to a nearby hospital for evaluation.
The fire marshal said it was determined there were multiple areas of origin inside the unit, which included several charred items, and the fire was deemed to have been intentionally set.
The fire department was also called to the same unit for a minor fire call two days prior.
Witness statements and evidence identified Jones as a suspect in the case and a warrant was issued for her arrest. Jones was taken into custody upon her release from the medical facility.