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Two fires that destroyed homes appear to have been set, say investigators

SoVaNow.com / March 04, 2014
A residential fire that occurred in the early morning hours of February 22 at 14184 Mountain Road has been ruled "incendiary" by local fire investigators. The singlewide trailer, owned by Patricia Suttle, was declared a total loss. The occupants, Stephanee Snead and her children, were not home at the time of the fire.

On March 1, a separate and unrelated residential structure fire occurred around 3:30 a.m. at 4241 L.P. Bailey Memorial Highway some four miles outside the town of Halifax. The home, owned by Sally Moore of Oxford, N.C. and occupied by her son James Reagan, Jr., was declared a total loss.

James Reagan, III and a friend were home at the time of the fire but escaped without injury. The cause of this fire was also determined to be incendiary and all other causes have been ruled out.

Fire investigators with the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office and Halifax County Emergency Services completed the investigations into the origin and cause of both fires. Both of the investigations are ongoing.

Authorities sought to assure citizens that these are isolated incidents. Residents are encouraged to remain vigilant and to always report any suspicious activity.

The Halifax County Department of Emergency Services emphasized that the list of suspicious fires does not include an early Sunday morning blaze that claimed the lives of two people, Ellen Canada and Brien Williams, who resided in a doublewide trailer on Lower Liberty Road in the Nathalie area.

Arson is a crime that affects not only individual victims but the community as a whole. Arson can raise property insurance rates for everyone, leave a community with blighted structures, and leaves innocent victims homeless.

A reward is being offered, in both cases, to anyone that can provide specific information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the suspect or suspects who are responsible. The Halifax County Crime Hot Line number is (434) 476- 8445. Persons with information can report tips anonymously.

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