Neighbor: Man set fire to mobile home

benw@ledger-enquirer.comNovember 16, 2012 

A Columbus fire is under investigation after the mother of two boys awoke to screams from a neighbor who says she saw an arsonist setting fire to a mobile home at 988 Farr Road.

"I can't believe someone tried to kill me and my kids," said Damisha White, 33.

White, her sons, three adult friends and two dogs were awakened in time to escape the 6:04 a.m. fire at lot M-9, Pine Tree Estates.

She sat on discarded mattresses in front of the home while waiting for assistance from the American Red Cross.

Fire Marshal Ricky Shores of Columbus Fire & Emergency Medical Services said the fire caused an estimated $12,000 in damages, including $10,000 to the mobile home and $2,000 to its contents.

"It burned the front portion of the trailer," Shores said. "Any fire damage to these trailers is the end of them because they are not repairable. This fire is still under investigation. I can't release any information further than that."

When asked about White's claims from a neighbor, Shores said the information was consistent with what fire officials had been told.

"We received similar information and its under investigation," the fire marshal said.

White said she and her sons, ages 12 and 13, have lived in the home almost nine months and the family got along well with neighbors.

One of her sons was sleeping on a front couch when her neighbor awoke the family. "She said, 'Baby, your house is on fire,'" White said.

One son went to the back of the trailer and pulled his brother out of the room.

"He dragged him to the hallway," White said. "The whole thing was on fire already. Both of them almost didn't make it out."

The neighbor told White a man was seen running north into woods near the mobile home.

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