A 13-year-old Goose Creek boy was charged with arson after allegedly setting a fire that caused almost $5,000 worth of property damage.
The boy admitted to Goose Creek police that he had used a cigarette lighter taken from his home to set fire to grass behind a home on Thousand Oaks Circle in The Preserve subdivision of Crowfield Plantation, according to a police incident report released today. The boy told police he had used the lighter to ignite some fireworks prior to setting the grass fire.
The incident occurred about 2 p.m. Friday, the report said. The boy was playing with four other children, none of whom knew the 13-year-old was going to set the grass on fire, according to the report. There were no classes for students Friday in the Berkeley County School District as it was a staff development day, according to the district.
The children told police they tried to stop the fire once it started but it spread very quickly and they ran away because they were afraid, the report said. According to a man whose property was damaged by the blaze, the fire was reported to authorities by one of the children, a girl, who knocked on a neighbor’s door to get help after she realized what the 13-year-old boy had done.
The Goose Creek Fire Department extinguished the fire. The children’s parents later brought them to the police station.
Damaged in the blaze were two wooden chairs, a plastic playhouse, about 75 feet of a wooden fence, a solar pool cover, lawn sod and a cable TV utility box, the report said. The fire damaged two lawns and came within 20 feet of a residence, according to one of the victims. No one was injured in the fire.
The 13-year-old boy was charged with third-degree arson and released to the custody of his parents. His case will be heard in Family Court.