A fire which occurred on January 3, 2020, in Mabaruma, North West District (NWD), Region One (Barima-Waini), which claimed the life of 58-year-old Judith Fredericks has been ruled out as arson.
This is according to the Guyana Police Force and the Fire Department following an investigation into the cause of the fire. The fire had originated after a kerosene lamp tipped over and quickly spread and destroyed the wooden structure.
It was reported that the fire started at around 22:00h on January 3, 2020, and engulfed the home owned by a 73-year-old pensioner who resides overseas.
Jacklyn Rampersaud, the daughter of the owner who lives next door was reportedly awakened by neighbours alerting her of the fire. Although residents attempted to put out the fire, they were forced to retreat due to the intense heat.
Sometime later, persons noticed that Fredericks, the caretaker of the house, was missing and checks were made for her to no avail.
However, as the fire officials turned up at the scene the following morning to conduct their investigations, they came across to the charred remains of the caretaker.
Following the discovery, persons reportedly told investigators that they suspected that the fire was deliberately set since Fredericks and another woman were engaged in a heated argument one day prior to the incident.
According to reports received, the two women often fight. However, those speculations have been put to rest after the conclusion of the investigation by the relevant authorities.
It was reported that Frederick’s was imbibing alcohol earlier on January 3. This led investigators to believe that the woman was intoxicated and allegedly knocked one of her kerosene lamps over which caused the fire.
She was trapped in the building but according to reports, no one heard any screams, which suggested that the woman might have been asleep when the fire started.