Wichita house fire being investigated as arson

KWCH – May 8, 2017


“It just hurts, Just to even be here right now.”

A woman tears up looking at what’s left of her Wichita home. Investigators say arson may be the cause of the fire that destroyed her house early Friday morning.

The homeowner spoke with Eyewitness News about what the past two days have been like for her. She shared her story with us, but asked us not to share her name.

She says she found out about the fire by text message and from social media stories. But, even knowing what was going on didn’t prepare her for the reality of being here and seeing what she’d lost.

“So it’s pretty traumatic. It’s pretty traumatic,” she said.

It’s been a tough weekend for the woman who lived in this home on East Aloma Street, not too far from I-135. She says she spent a lot of time fixing the place up, painting the rooms the right color, keeping the hard wood floors sparkling clean, turning this rental house into a home.

“Yeah, everything’s gone,” she sighed.

She was gone the night her home went up in flames.
“I wasn’t home and I was just getting calls from just various people in my family,” she said.

Fire crews say her neighbors heard the fire and called 911 around 4 o’clock Friday morning. Fire investigators say it might have been arson.

“I don’t know what to say,” she says, gesturing aimlessly. “I’m just fortunate and I just thank God that, you know, we were not home.”

Sunday, she surveyed the damage, rooms burnt down to ash, windows and walls gone. She’s covers her face against the sight. It’s overwhelming, she says.

She tells Eyewitness News she’s glad her three kids are safe in her car, the only things she has left now.

She says she didn’t have renters insurance and had just spent all her money the week before paying rent and other bills.

“Just trying to figure out where to go from here,” she said.

While we spoke, once again she stepped up to the front door to look inside but couldn’t go any further.

“I couldn’t bring myself to walk through it. It just… It just… It just hurts,” she said.

She says she doesn’t know what she’ll do next. At this point she’s living from moment to moment.

We expect to learn more from the Wichita Fire Department about the investigation into the possibility of arson Monday morning.

We now know a Friday-morning house fire in south Wichita is being investigated as arson. That’s according to Wichita Fire Marshal Brad Crisp.

Crews tell us the fire started at the back of the home, then spread through the house. No one was inside the home at the time of the fire, but there was significant damage.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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