Seattle police say a 12-year-old boy playing with matches is responsible for burning down a vacant house in the Olympic Hills neighborhood earlier this week.
According to a police report, officers and firefighters were called to the home in the 14300 block of 30th Avenue Northeast around 5 p.m. Wednesday. When fire crews arrived, flames were “shooting from the roof” and trees near the home were ablaze, said Seattle Fire Department spokesman Kyle Moore.
Two 12-year-old girls told a Fire Department battalion chief that the boy had started the fire, according to police. The girls directed authorities to nearby Little Brook Park, saying the boy might be there.
Police found the boy at the park and walked him back to the fire scene, according to a police report released this morning. The boy denied starting the fire, although one of the 12-year-old girls said he had been playing with matches earlier that day.
“It was accidental. There wasn’t intent to burn down the house,” Moore said. “He was referred to our Fire Stoppers program, where kids learn about the dangers of arson.”
The boy was released to his parents, police said.
The house was destroyed in the fire; the damage estimate is $200,000, Moore said.