Advertisement

Smoldering embers started Christmas fire

STAMFORD, Conn., Dec. 28 (UPI) -- Smoldering fireplace embers appear to have sparked the Christmas Day fire in Connecticut that killed three girls and their grandparents, investigators said.

Stamford Chief Fire Marshal Barry Callahan said the ashes were placed in a mudroom or outdoor garbage enclosure and ignited early Christmas morning, the Stamford Advocate reported Wednesday.

Advertisement

Michael Borcina, the contractor renovating the stately Victorian, cleaned out the fireplace as he and homeowner Madonna Badger went to bed shortly after 3 a.m., investigators said. The house was engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived at the 3,350 square-foot home less than 2 hours later.

Callahan said the investigation into the fire that killed Badger's three daughters -- Lily, Sarah and Grace -- and parents Lomer and Pauline Johnson is ongoing.

The state medical examiner said autopsies show the three girls and their grandmother died of smoke inhalation and their grandfather died from blunt head and neck trauma that occurred when he fell as he tried to rescue the children.

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement