Neighbors concerned after vacant house burns for 3rd time this year

By Rob Manch - Reporter

ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - The Roanoke Fire Department is still investigating what caused a house in Southeast to catch fire Thanksgiving night, but they say one thing is certain, It was done on purpose.

The fire occurred in the 1000 block of 12th Street Southeast, and it's the third time the house has caught fire this year.

People living in the neighborhood say it's scary not knowing who has set the house on fire three times this year, and there are now signs on the door to indicate that the house has been deemed structurally unsound by the City of Roanoke after all the damage.

Fire crews were able to quickly extinguish the fire set on Thanksgiving night.

Debbie Puckett, who lives just down the street says her son spotted the commotion.

"He saw the fire trucks and he went up the road and checked it out," said Puckett.

The last time crews came out was on November 12th for another fire.

That time, a firefighter was injured.

At this point, the Fire Marshal says the fires are being set intentionally, but right now the city doesn't have a suspect.

Puckett says that's what scares her the most.

"It's a scary situation. I mean, sometimes I lose sleep over this, because I don't know what's going to happen near us," said Puckett.

The postings on the door say the property belongs to a James Louis Baker.

Puckett says she's never met him, but now, after a third fire in one year, she hopes the city takes action.

"I'd like to see it condemned, something done about this," said Puckett.

Puckett says she hopes that the city will ultimately have the property demolished so that it doesn't continue to cause her or any of her neighbors concerns in the future.

Copyright by WSLS - All rights reserved