Fire Marshal: Fatal blaze sparked by smoking in bed, second victim identified

Fire Marshal: Fatal blaze sparked by smoking in bed, second victim identified
(Source: Fred Gamble/KSLA News 12)
(Source: Fred Gamble/KSLA News 12)

TEXARKANA, AR (KSLA) - The fire that killed 2 people in what was supposed to be a vacant house last week was sparked by smoking materials on a bed, according to the Texarkana, Arkansas Fire Marshal. 

Stephen Johnson has also released the name of the second victim in the October 14 blaze that destroyed the house in the 1000 block of Laurel Street, which had no utilities and was supposed to be vacant at the time.

36-year-old Violet V. Koontz was found in the bedroom, where the fire is believed to have started on the bed.

44-year-old Winston Whitfield II was identified the day after the fire.

Johnson says the cause of the fire was unintentional.

Authorities said it took longer to identify Koontz, due to the extent of the damage to her body from the fire.

Johnson said the results from the autopsy are not yet complete and will not be available for a couple of weeks.

Copyright 2015 KSLA. All rights reserved.