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Beaver County sheriff: Arson fire, suspected suicide attempt linked

Published March 20, 2014 4:52 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The Beaver County Sheriff's Office arrested and jailed a woman Thursday, the day after she allegedly set her rural central Utah house afire and then attempted suicide.

Sheriff Cameron Noel said the 60-year-old woman was taken into custody soon after her release from the hospital, where she had been taken Wednesday following an apparent drug overdose. She was booked into Beaver County Jail on suspicion of three counts of arson.

Firefighters responded about 1 p.m. Wednesday to the blaze in a manufactured home near 2100 South and 200 West in rural Milford.

"When emergency crews arrived it was quickly determined that the home and [out]buildings were intentionally started on fire," the sheriff said.

The woman living in the home was not found and deputies broadcast an "attempt to locate" bulletin. About 90 minutes later, she was found inside her car, parked in a field about 3 miles away.

Paramedics, suspecting an intentional drug overdose, rushed the woman to the hospital.

Telephone messages she had left for her estranged husband, along with a record of previous domestic disputes, pointed toward the woman's involvement in the fire, as well as her suspected subsequent suicide bid, Noel said.

However, the investigation continues. Sheriff's investigators and representatives of the Utah State Fire Marshal's Office will screen possible charges once the probe wraps up.

As for the home, Noel said it appeared to have been a total loss, with damages approaching $200,000.


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