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Arson suspected in death of young boy

Police, onlookers at the scene of the blaze.

Police, onlookers at the scene of the blaze.

ST. JOHN’S — A case of suspected arson has left police looking at possibly the fifth murder for the year, as they probe the death of an eight-year-old boy whose parents were also injured in a blaze, which gutted their home in the wee hours, of yesterday morning.

Dead is Clifton Samuel Jr, a student of the Greenbay Primary School.

According to official police reports, the boy was at home with his parents, Judith Williams and Clifton Samuel Sr, when a witness recounted hearing an explosion before the 15X15, one bedroom, wooden structure on Loblolly Hill, burst into flames around 2:15 a.m.

The mother is said to be in critical condition in the Intensive Care Unit, while Samuel Sr is reportedly in a more stable condition.

Villagers expressed outrage over the tragedy and said they hope the police thoroughly investigate the matter, as there is strong evidence to suggest the fire was maliciously set.

Police in a press statement yesterday confirmed the matter is being treated as a case of suspected arson.

Residents described the victim, Samuel Jr, as athletic, fun and loving. He is the third person to die in a house fire for the year.

Last month, Gabrielle Thomas, five and her sister Arielle Thomas, three, were asleep in their Villa home when a fire broke out.

By the time residents realised the children were still inside, the house was already engulfed in flames and efforts to rescue them were unsuccessful. (Antigua Observer)

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