House Fire Kills Toddler in Oklahoma

CALERA, Okla. (AP) -- A fire that killed a 23-month-old girl was the result of her older brother playing with matches or a lighter, authorities said Wednesday.

Virginia Privitt died in the fire, which started about 8 a.m., Bryan County Sheriff's Sgt. Charles Boucher said. The blaze was declared accidental, Boucher said.

The child's 4-year-old brother was upstairs playing with matches or a lighter before he went downstairs to his parents, Boucher said.

''Sissy's bed is on fire,'' Boucher said the boy told his parents. ''The dad tried to go upstairs but couldn't because of the heat.''

Roger Privitt tried repeatedly to rescue his daughter while her mother, Sarah Privitt, called 911, Boucher said.

Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper Scott King and Calera police officer Donnie Hyde also tried to enter the toddler's room from inside the house and through a window.

Boucher also tried to rescue the girl but all were pushed back by the heat, Boucher said.

It took firefighters about 30 minutes to contain the fire enough to enter the house and take out the toddler, Undersheriff Ken Golden said.

The 4-year-old told investigators he set two beds upstairs on fire and started another fire in a closet downstairs, Golden said.

No one else was injured, Boucher said.

Information from: The Oklahoman

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