Fire strikes house north of LSU twice in one day

Firefighters responded twice to emergency calls at the same home just a few blocks north of LSU Thursday morning — first to a suspected arson and later to a fire without an immediately clear cause.

The first call came about 3:30 a.m. Firefighters arrived at the home in the 2700 block of Indiana Street and found it on fire, said Mark Miles, a Baton Rouge Fire Department spokesman.

The home’s owner, an elderly woman, woke up to popping noises, Miles said, just in time to round up her two grandchildren and escape.

Firefighters had the blaze, which began in a shed behind the home and was deemed an arson, under control by 4:40 a.m.

But just three hours later, they received another call notifying them that smoke was coming from the home. Upon arrival, they discovered the fire in a part of the home that sustained damage in the earlier fire, Miles said.

It was unclear Thursday afternoon exactly what caused both fires, he said.

Second arson destroys vacant BR house

The Baton Rouge Fire Department is investigating a Wednesday night arson at the same vacant north Baton Rouge house that was damaged by another arson just two months ago, a department spokesman said.

Firefighters responded about 9:20 p.m. to the 3700 block of Alliquippa Street, between Interstate 110 and Plank Road, and found the vacant house ablaze, said Mark Miles, a department spokesman.

“It didn’t burn down to the ground the first time,” Miles said. “This time, they burned up everything that was left.”

No one lived at the house between the two fires, both of which are believed to have been set intentionally, Miles said.

Authorities book 3 on suspicion of DWI

Authorities arrested at least three people suspected of driving while intoxicated in East Baton Rouge Parish and booked them into Parish Prison between 2:30 p.m. Wednesday and 2:30 p.m. Thursday, booking records show.

Those booked and the counts against them:

  • Brittany Quirk, 21, 38530 La. 621, Gonzales, first-offense DWI, vehicle registration violation and driver’s license suspended or revoked.
  • Phillip Starns, 23, 10348 Celtic Drive., Baton Rouge, second-offense DWI, drinking in a motor vehicle, driver’s license suspended or revoked and obstruction of a highway.
  • Kenneth Startup, 22, 1362 Brightside Drive, Baton Rouge, first-offense DWI, disobeying a red light and drinking in a motor vehicle.

Compiled from staff reports. To talk to a crime reporter at The Advocate, call (225) 388-0369.