Suspect Cooking Crack Starts Florida House Fire


Firefighters in Maitland had to brave the heat to fight a fire they say was started by a man trying to cook crack inside his home.

The fire happened Monday morning in a Park Lake Villas town home on Grove Street (see map).

Eyewitness News learned the owner's son was arrested and the State Fire Marshal and Maitland police took him to police headquarters.

AT THE SCENE: Images Of Suspect, Damage

Investigators said he destroyed a house trying to cook and smoke crack-cocaine in the upstairs bedroom.

The homeowner's son lost his shorts as the State Fire Marshal arrested and charged him with arson.

Initially, fire investigators said they thought it was a cigarette that sparked the fire and police did pull a pack from the suspect's shorts.

However, investigators say they found a working crack room. Firefighters from Maitland and Winter Park spent all morning putting out the fire that also caused damage to a neighboring town home.

The suspect's name was not released. He faces up to 30 years in jail for arson and more time will likely be added on because of the drug charges.

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