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November 05. 2013 2:49PM

Police to charge two children with Sunday fire in Strafford

STRAFFORD — Police plan to charge two children, ages 9 and 10, in connection with a two-alarm blaze that destroyed a Leavitt Lane home Sunday.

What began as a report of a suspicious person, called in around 2:13 p.m., quickly mushroomed into a devastating fire at 38 Leavitt Lane.

Three minutes later, an officer arrived at the scene and found one child behind the home.

"The officer entered the home and found the second suspect and took both suspects into custody and placed them in his cruiser," according to police.

The officer returned inside in an attempt to extinguish the fire, but it was too late.

Firefighters responded at 2:17 p.m. and quickly sounded a second alarm to bring more personnel and water to help fight the fire, according to Fire Chief Scott Whitehouse.

Whitehouse said Monday that firefighters were able to get the fire under control within 20 minutes.

Members of Barrington Police and firefighters from Barrington, Barnstead, Candia, Chichester, Epsom, Farmington, Northwood, Nottingham and Rochester responded to help at the scene. Firefighters from New Durham provided station coverage, according to Whitehouse.

After firefighters arrived, the two children were taken to the police department until their parents arrived.

"Charges will be forthcoming," according to police.

Police, firefighters and members of the New Hampshire Fire Marshal's Office continue to investigate the matter.

The owners – who winter in Florida – were not in the area when the fire occurred.

Police said the home was a total loss even though firefighters were able to limit the damage in certain areas of the home. The kitchen, living room and seasonal deck were "gutted," according to Whitehouse.


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