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Kannapolis group home fire ‘suspicious’

KANNAPOLIS ó Fire and police investigators say a fire at a group home started in a bedroom closet and is “suspicious” in origin.
Police Sgt. Chris Nesbitt said this afternoon that he has just assigned the case to Detective Laura Carden, who has a number of people to interview, including the three juveniles who were living at the home at 414 N. Cannon Blvd.
The home was operated by Americare Group Home Inc.
Nesbitt said preliminary reports have estimated the fire caused $20,000 damage, and he characterized the damage as “pretty severe.”
Fire officials still have the home closed as a fire scene.
The fire broke out Friday evening, and a smoke alarm alerted the juveniles and two adults at the home at the time. They escaped injury.
Officials said flames filled the first floor of the two-story brick house across from the Big Lots parking lot. Firefighters arrived at 6:24 p.m. Friday to find heavy, black smoke and flames coming from both floors of the structure.
“There was a good deal of fire coming from the structure,” Battalion Chief David Winecoff said in a press release. “When I arrived on the scene, I could see flames from the floor to the ceiling on the main level and up to the second level.”
Winecoff said firefighters did an excellent job with their initial attack and had the fire under control by 7:19 p.m.
Fire investigators determined the blaze started in a bedroom closet, Nesbitt said. But he said he did not know any more about the cause of the fire right now.

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