Petitions Filed Against Five Juveniles In Old School Fire
Posted April 25, 1996
DURHAM — April 26, 1996 - 9:53 a.m. EDT
Five juveniles suspected of starting a fire that destroyed an abandoned school will remain with their parents while awaiting trial.
The boys -- ages 12 and 13 -- were accused in juvenile court Thursday of breaking and entering and burning a public building, both felonies. The names of the boys will not be released because of their ages.
The building, which housed Hope Valley Elementary School until it closed in 1993, burned on April 8. Damage was estimated at $1.5 million.
Fire investigators say the boys were skateboarding near the abandoned building when they decided to break a window in a back door and sneak in. The boys made a torch with debris and a lighter, but soon some other material started burning and the fire spread out of control.
If convicted, the boys could receive as much as a year's probation and community service. They might also be required to help clean up the building's rubble.
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