MONROE, Wis. --
The Green County District Attorney's Office said it has filed a delinquency petition charging a 16-year-old girl with arson and felony murder in connection with a March house fire in Monroe.
The early-morning blaze on March 23, which broke out at a house in the 2400 block of 16th Street on the city's east side, injured three firefighters who were trying to rescue Jeffrey Sullivan, 37, of Monroe.
Firefighters found Sullivan in a basement room. He was taken to an area hospital where he died from inhalation injuries due to the fire.
The Green County District Attorney's Office said that after an extensive investigation by detectives with the Monroe Police Department and investigators with the state Department of Justice, authorities determined that the fire wasn't an accident. Investigators said they believe the juvenile intentionally started the fire.
Green County Assistant District Attorney Jeffrey Kohl said the fire was set with matches, ordinary bedding and other material.
He said at first the teen gave statements that did not match the evidence, but later corroborated the facts.
Kohl stopped short of calling it a confession.
"I don't think we intend to show or would show that she had any intent to harm a human being let along kill another human being," said Kohl. "But it fits the requirements of the statue and that's the way we've charged it."
The felony murder charge is an enhancer to the original crime of arson and does not imply intent.
Because the teen is a juvenile her identity is protected, but authorities said the girl is, "not a stranger to the family."
At this time, a petition seeking waiver of the juvenile to adult court hasn't been filed.
The juvenile's initial court appearance to enter a plea is set for Sept. 29.
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